Record-breaking Signature Gathering Drive Began After Initiative Ballot Title Challenges Resolved
Seattle, WA – Today, the Alliance for Gun Responsibility started gathering signatures to qualify Initiative 1639, Safe Schools, Safe Communities, for the November ballot. The policy is designed to help increase school and public safety in communities across Washington.
“Too many people in our state and across the country have lost their lives to gun violence. Just this past weekend, a young man who was two weeks shy from graduating high school was tragically killed in a community park by senseless, preventable gun violence,” said Renée Hopkins, CEO of the Alliance for Gun Responsibility. “Students are tired of holding vigils for their peers and parents should never, ever, have to bury their children. We can change this and that’s why we are fighting so hard for Initiative 1639.”
The proposed initiative will address many of the root causes of recent tragedies by raising the age to purchase semiautomatic rifles to 21; creating an enhanced background check system similar to what is required for handguns; requiring completion of a firearm safety training course; and holding gun owners accountable if someone uses their unsecured firearm to harm themselves or others.
“Since we announced the ballot initiative in April, we have been overwhelmed by the positive response from leaders throughout the state,” said Hopkins. “We’ve been hard at work gearing up for a highly-visible signature gathering drive over the next four weeks. We already have a broad coalition of volunteers, partner organizations and community leaders throughout the state who strongly support this policy and are hitting the ground with petitions.”
The Alliance raised nearly $3 million dollars to support statewide gun violence prevention efforts, including Safe Schools, Safe Communities at their annual luncheon in May. The Alliance has previously run two successful ballot initiatives, which established Universal Background Checks in 2014 and Extreme Risk Protection Orders in 2016. Both initiatives passed with an overwhelming majority by Washington voters, 59 percent and 69 percent, respectively.
To learn more about Safe Schools, Safe Communities, visit: https://gunresponsibility.org/reduce-assault-weapon-violence-initiative/
About the Alliance for Gun Responsibility
The Alliance for Gun Responsibility works to end the gun violence crisis in our community and to promote a culture of gun ownership that balances rights with responsibilities. Through collaboration with experts, civic leaders, and citizens, we work to find evidenced-based solutions to the crisis of gun violence in our community. We create innovative policy, advocate for changes in laws, and promote community education to reduce gun violence. Learn more at www.gunresponsibility.org and follow us at @WAGunResponsib.