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Everytown for Gun Safety Releases Guidelines on How Financial Institutions Can Help Reduce Violence by Requiring Gun Industry Business Customers to Follow Responsible Business Practices

Everytown’s Proposed Codes of Conduct for Dealers and Manufacturers Can Help Financial Institutions Incentivize Responsible Practices

NEW YORK – Everytown for Gun Safety, the country’s largest gun violence prevention organization, today provided guidance for financial institutions to help reduce gun violence by requiring business customers involved in the firearms industry to follow responsible business practices. Modeled on “know your customer” requirements that are already in force at financial institutions, Everytown released proposed gun safety codes of conduct, available here, to help these institutions identify tangible steps for working with gun dealers and gun manufacturers.

Among other simple ideas for reform, Everytown is recommending that financial institutions require gun dealers to commit to:

  • Taking affirmative steps to keep guns out of the hands of people who should not have them, including by properly protecting merchandise from burglary and theft and by refusing to perform “default proceed” sales, sales to persons who appear intoxicated or in distress, and sales to potential straw purchasers – and
  • Reducing the lethality of shootings by refusing to sell high capacity magazines and bump stocks or other accessories that allow semiautomatic guns to approximate automatic fire.

The guidelines also recommend financial institutions require gun manufacturers to:

  • Insist that all dealers and distributors in their supply chain follow a code of conduct that will reduce the diversion of firearms to prohibited persons or illegal uses.
  • Commit to developing innovations in firearms that will allow law enforcement to more easily solve gun crimes and will prevent unauthorized users from discharging firearms.

Every year, gun dealers and manufacturers legally sell millions of guns, and yet hundreds of thousands of these guns are recovered by law enforcement in connection with crimes or are otherwise put to illegal or unauthorized use. Dealers and manufacturers can play an important role in preventing the illegal diversion of firearms and in increasing public safety, and financial institutions can make sure the gun industry is taking reasonable steps to do so.

In the wake of the Parkland tragedy, Citigroup announced it was setting restrictions on the sale of firearms by its business customers. Everytown applauded the announcement in a statement available here.

STATEMENT FROM JOHN FEINBLATT, PRESIDENT OF EVERYTOWN FOR GUN SAFETY:

“Gun dealers and manufacturers have an important role to play in keeping guns out of the illegal market, and the banks and lenders that support those businesses do too. With more and more Americans calling for action after the Parkland tragedy, a growing number of corporate leaders are recognizing that they are well-positioned to act. With these guidelines, financial institutions now have the policy guidance they need to do their part to help make this country safer.”