ICYMI: “It’s Going to Take All of Us To Get This Done:” Governor Shapiro, House Democrats, and Law Enforcement Leaders Advocate for Commonsense Gun Reforms to Keep Pennsylvanians Safe
June 05, 2023
“Let me tell you what real freedom looks like to me. It means having the freedom to walk down the street and not worry about getting shot in our communities. Real freedom means our kids can go to school and focus on science and math and english and not focus on shooter drills.”
Harrisburg, PA – On Friday, Governor Josh Shapiro joined House Democrats and local law enforcement leaders in Delaware County to highlight the House’s recent passage of commonsense bills to make Pennsylvania communities safer – and their shared commitment to making progress on this critical issue. Governor Shapiro supports these bipartisan bills that empower families and Pennsylvania law enforcement – and he is committed to building a broad coalition to support commonsense gun safety reform to protect communities all across the Commonwealth.
Lieutenant Governor Austin Davis also wrote an op-ed published in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and the Erie Times applauding the House’s bipartisan passage of HB 714 and HB 1018 and joined CeaseFirePA and Moms Demand Action in Pittsburgh on National Wear Orange Day to call for legislative action to end gun violence across the Commonwealth.
Read what Pennsylvania elected officials and law enforcement leaders are saying about the need to pass commonsense gun reform to:
- Governor Josh Shapiro: “Let me tell you what real freedom looks like to me. It means having the freedom to walk down the street and not worry about getting shot in our communities. Real freedom means our kids can go to school and focus on science and math and english and not focus on shooter drills. Real freedom means a family getting up on a Sunday morning, put on their finest clothes, walking down the street to church, worrying about what’s in the hymnal, not worrying about a shooter coming in and attacking them in their pews. That’s real freedom, the freedom to be safe and feel safe in our communities.”
- Rep. Gina Curry: “These two bills are important steps towards a safer Pennsylvania. I just want to say I thank our Governor, as the Attorney General, he continued to work with law enforcement and both sides of the aisle to get these important issues done.”
- Senator Tim Kearney: “I want to thank the Governor for coming to Delaware County and for organizing this press conference as our country recognizes Gun Violence Awareness Day today. This year, thanks to our house members, we can celebrate a small victory in our Commonwealth’s fight for sensible gun control legislation. I stand before you not just as a senator, but also as an advocate, who id deeply committed to finding meaningful solutions to reduce gun violence and protect our federal Pennsylvanians. The recent passage of two gun reform bills in the House is a significant step towards our collective effort to make our Commonwealth safer for all of us.”
- Rep. Jen O’Mara: “I’m so grateful to Governor Shapiro and his team for organizing this event. In 2003, we lost my dad to gun suicide. He was a career firefighter in Philadelphia, I have been the prime sponsor of extreme risk protection orders for the last five years because I fundamentally believe that this is a tool that we can put into place to prevent deaths like my dad’s. Right now, the only option that we have is a 302, and we all know that that can result in permanent loss of your constitutional right. An extreme risk protection order will guarantee due process will make sure that you go in front of a judge and is temporary. We know that suicide is killing far too many people in our state. And we also know that we lose more first responders to suicide than we do in the line of duty. Extreme risk protection orders are going to help save lives. I want to thank all of my colleagues who voted for this measure, including some on the other side of the aisle, because this has bipartisan support.”
- Rep. Perry Warren: “Thank you so much to our leadership – to our Speaker Joanna McClinton, our Majority Democratic Leader Matt Bradford, to Ceasefire PA for championing the cause of gun safety in this state, and especially to Governor Shapiro for making it a tenant of his budget address and fighting for gun safety as Attorney General, as Governor, and before and in the future. Universal background checks, HB 714, which I sponsored over half a decade ago, will ensure that all firearm sales in Pennsylvania are subject to background checks regardless the length of the barrel, regardless of the type of gun. We had bipartisan support, because this is the right thing to do. It’s the right legislation is the right time, it’s supported by the residents of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, it’s supported by a majority of the members of the House of Representatives. It’s time next week, the opportunity for the Senate to return to Harrisburg, pass these critical bills and ensure gun safety throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”
- House Majority Leader Matt Bradford: “These aren’t Democrat and Republican issues has been said before, these are common sense public safety issues, joined by our law enforcement who do such amazing job keeping us safe, that have been championed by our Governor – our former Attorney General – who’s spoken about the need to finally address these issues in meaningful ways.”
- Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer: “I had the good fortune of sharing a same passion as Governor Shapiro and that’s to do common sense gun safety measures. Shortly after I was elected District Attorney and he was serving as Attorney General of Pennsylvania, we got together and decided we were going to do something about gun violence here in Delaware County, particularly in the city. We built a partnership between the community and law enforcement that two years on, two and a half years after we started, has reduced the number of gun homicides in that city by 60% and has stopped the overall shootings by 46%. He and I created the most successful Gun Violence Reduction Program in the Commonwealth, but he and I also knew at the time, that it wasn’t enough that we have to keep everyone alive. And we need more tools in the toolbox. All of us in law enforcement who have any common sense at all and have read these bills understand what we’re trying to do here.”
- Delaware County Sheriff Jerry Sanders: “I don’t take it for granted that we in law enforcement have a Governor and legislators that support our duty to serve and protect. And I see this collective assemblage as a recognition that we all ultimately have the same duty to our constituents and the people of Pennsylvania to serve and protect – and we can only do it together. We cannot do it strictly with law enforcement, can’t do it by the legislature standing alone or the Governor, but Governor Shapiro has taken a stand to take the lead on supporting everything that has been shared here.”
See what Pennsylvanians are reading about these commonsense bills to make Pennsylvania communities safer: