Statement of Principles
Whereas: As mayors, our problems may look different from town to town, but we are united in our duty to do everything we can to protect our residents from the threat of gun violence;
Whereas: Every year, nearly 40,000 Americans are killed with guns and 85,000 Americans are shot and wounded as a result of gun assaults, unintentional shootings, attempted gun suicides and shootings by law enforcement, devastating families and communities across the country, with a disproportionate impact on Black and Latino/a/x people;
Now, therefore, we resolve to work together to advance the following principles:
Collect and publish data to better understand gun violence in our communities.
Analyze trends in gun suicides, homicides, and non-fatal injuries over time, and map gun violence incidents to identify the communities, neighborhoods, and individuals most impacted. Publish data on gun violence, including police violence, routinely so that community members and researchers alike can easily access and learn from it.
Center racial equity in our efforts to reduce gun violence.
Advance policies and practices that prioritize communities disproportionately impacted by gun violence, understanding the deeper systemic issues that are impacting these communities.
Advocate for gun safety legislation at the local, state, and federal level.
Support life-saving gun violence prevention laws like background checks on all gun sales, domestic violence firearm relinquishment, and Red Flag laws; and oppose harmful laws, like Stand Your Ground, permitless carry, guns in schools, and state preemption.
Advance policies and practices that reduce firearm suicides and unintentional shootings.
Raise public awareness and advance education about the risks of firearm access; encourage the responsible storage of firearms to prevent access by children; and create mechanisms to temporarily remove firearms from households with individuals in crisis.
Invest in survivor services and community-based violence intervention programs.
Help heal communities and disrupt cycles of violence by investing in comprehensive services for survivors and support the integration of community-based violence intervention programs into public safety strategies.
Advance enforcement strategies that ensure public safety for residents.
Support evidence-based, intelligence-led policing that focuses on preventing violence among those at highest risk of shooting or being shot and promote the enforcement of existing gun laws that have swift and certain consequences.
Defend our democracy from armed intimidation.
Promote the enforcement of laws against unlawful carrying, brandishment and armed intimidation, with a specific focus on the armed extremists who have abridged civil rights or sought to intimidate democratic institutions.
Implement comprehensive tracing of crime guns.
Encourage police to trace all suspected crime guns to identify the sources of firearms, to develop leads, and to identify potential traffickers. Target illegal supply, including holding accountable irresponsible gun dealers who knowingly sell to straw purchasers and the criminals who traffic in illegal guns.
Bring an end to unauthorized shootings by police and hold law enforcement accountable.
Work to institute a strong use of force legal standard as well as a thorough and independent system for reviewing use of force incidents; train officers to prioritize de-escalation and focus on building community trust; implement tools for officers at risk of misconduct; and introduce transparency around policies, procedures, and the use of force by police.
Use the courts to advance gun safety.
Challenge dangerous gun lobby sponsored laws that limit the ability of cities to advance gun violence prevention in their communities and fight in court to defend local gun safety ordinances against preemption and Second Amendment challenges.
Use purchasing power to improve gun safety.
Encourage businesses to implement gun sense policies, including by using municipal purchasing, investing, and bond issuing power to incentivize businesses large and small to adopt reforms that keep their customers – and our communities – safer.
Invite other cities to join us in this effort.
Help us strengthen this coalition as we work together to end gun violence in America.