Midland. Dayton. El Paso. Tree of Life.
Our state legislature is returning this month from a three-month break and it's obvious that their "thoughts and prayers" approach to curing gun violence is not working.
We are asking you to do one action a day in the remaining time before the PA State Legislature returns to session, September 17 for the State House, September 23 for the State Senate.
September 10 - Attend Turning Anguish Into Action: Next Steps for a World Free of Gun Violence Workshop.
Call Senator Toomey It is time for him to support UNIVERSAL background checks S.42 requires a background check for PRIVATE and GUN DEALER sales. Great to follow this up with an email to his office. (412) 803-3501, (202) 224-4254.
Call Speaker of the PA State House Mike Turzai at (717) 772-9943 and tell him to put common sense gun reform on the House calendar. The state senate judiciary committee is holding hearings, it is time for Rep. Turzai to act. If you live in his district, consider stopping by his office (125 Hillvue Lane, 1st Floor, McCandless, PA 15237) to deliver your message in person.
Contact your State Representative and State Senator about HB1075 and SB90, the extreme risk protection order (ERPO, red flag) bills we support. If your legislators are co-sponsors (check here and here), thank them. If your legislators are NOT on that list - urge them to add their names. ERPOS save lives from suicide, domestic violence and probably mass shootings.
It is National Suicide Prevention Month. Post a link to a helpline on your social media feed. Suicide is a veterans’ issue. If Conor Lamb is your Congressional Representative, call his office (202) 225-2301, (412) 344-5583, (724) 206-4860 (or stop by) and leave a message urging him to co-sponsor HR1236 and HR3076, the federal extreme risk protection order bills.
In PA, anyone can purchase a long gun (hunting rifle or AR-15) through a private sale WITHOUT a background check. SB-88 and HB673 close that loophole. If your state senator and representative are sponsors (check here and here), call and leave a message thanking them. If they are NOT, why not? Call and urge them to sign on.
Stop the Sue Our Cities Bill. Both our state and federal legislators have been--at their best--slow to pass laws stemming the flow of guns to the wrong hands. And now, in PA, there are (once again) fast-moving bills designed to bankrupt towns who have been forced to pass beyond-necessary local gun laws in the face of this inaction. These laws re-write the bedrock of our entire legal system--i.e., who can sue someone in court--to give the gun lobby and all of its supporters unprecedented leeway to file lawsuits against towns across the state *and* simultaneously leave PA taxpayers holding the bag to fund the gun lobby’s legal fees. SB 531 is the state Senate bill and it has passed out of Committee and is ready for a full vote in the Senate; we need you to contact your state Senator and urge him/her to vote against this bill.
Attend (as part of the “International Day of Peace” week) the ‘Gun Violence and the Impact on African American Communities’ workshop hosted by Black Women for Positive Change, CeaseFirePA, and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. 6-7:30 pm at the Rodman Street Missionary Baptist Church,6111 Rodman Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15206. See flyer below.
September 18 - (2 events)
Join ProgressPA, CeaseFirePA, and Squirrel Hill Stands Against Gun Violence for Enough, a rally for common sense gun legislation and AGAINST obstruction by the state and federal legislatures. Noon - 1 pm at Duncan Avenue at Covenant Avenue, outside McCandless Crossing 15237.
Join Squirrel Hill Stands Against Gun Violence and CeaseFirePA--as part of the “International Day of Peace” week--for a letter-to- the-editor writing workshop and write a letter to the editor about gun violence prevention. Bring your laptop or other writing supplies. 7-8:30 pm. Rodef Shalom, 4905 Fifth Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15213 (check in at the desk).
Call Senator Toomey and tell him it is time for him to support S. 506, the Senate’s Extreme Risk Protection Order bill. [See above for ERPO analysis.] (412) 803-3501, (202) 224-4254.
September 20, 21, or 22
Contact your State Representative and State Senator about SB 292 and HB 307, respectively--these are the state assault weapons bans. Each one is sitting in their respective Judiciary Committee waiting for a hearing or a vote.
September 20, 21, or 22
Attend annual “Reading of the Names [of all Allegheny County residents who were killed by guns from 9/21/18-9/20/19]” event. The location and exact date of the event are still being planned at this time (not by us, but by partners of ours). We will keep you posted via e-mail the second we have a confirmed location and date.
September 20, 21, or 22
For those who are in Congressman Conor Lamb’s district, call him and ask him to support S. 66/H.R.1296, the U.S. Senate’s assault weapons ban bill. (He currently does not.) (202) 225-2301, (412) 344-5583, (724) 206-4860.
Call state Senator Lisa Baker, the chair of the state Senate Judiciary Committee,’s office--(717) 787-7428--and thank her for scheduling hearings re: gun legislation on Sept. 24 and Sept. 25. However, while thanking her, remind her (or her staff) that now is the time to pass SB 90, the state Senate ERPO bill, and SB 88, the state Senate background checks expansion bill. If your state senator is on the Judiciary Committee (check here), please call them and urge them to pass these bills.
Attend CeaseFirePA-sponsored Gun Violence Prevention-themed “Tuesdays with Toomey” rally in front of Sen. Pat Toomey’s office in downtown Pittsburgh (310 Grant St., Pittsburgh, PA 15219) from 12 pm - 12:45 pm.
Organize a carpool or join the one existing carpool that’s happening (1 seat still available!) to Harrisburg for the 1 p.m. testimony of CeaseFirePA’s Executive Director, Shira Goodman, at the state Senate Judiciary Committee hearing at the state Capitol! E-mail Rob Conroy at email@example.com if you want to do this.