WASHINGTON – Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a part of Everytown, today applauded a group of business leaders from some of America’s leading companies, including Dick’s Sporting Goods, Levi Strauss & Co., TOMS and RXR Realty for issuing a joint letter today urging Congress to pass H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019.
STATEMENT FROM JOHN FEINBLATT, PRESIDENT OF EVERYTOWN FOR GUN SAFETY:
“America’s business leaders are raising their voices in support of common-sense solutions to the uniquely American problem of gun violence. We are proud to stand with these courageous companies and the communities they serve in supporting the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019, which will close the deadly loopholes in America’s background checks law.”
STATEMENT FROM SHANNON WATTS, FOUNDER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“These leaders are setting an example for how the business community can stand for the safety of their customers and employees. An overwhelming majority of Americans support updating our background check system. It’s time that America’s corporate leaders join us — proudly and publicly — in the fight to protect our families from gun violence.”
As reported today, the letter states:
“As leaders of some of America’s most respected companies, we are writing to you because we have a responsibility and obligation to stand up for the safety of our employees, customers and all Americans in the communities we serve across the country.
“Gun violence in America is not inevitable; it’s preventable. There are steps Congress can, and must, take to prevent and reduce gun violence.
“That’s why we urge the House of Representatives to stand with the American public and take action on gun safety by voting for H.R. 8, The Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019, to require background checks on all gun sales.”
Under current federal law, background checks are required only for gun sales by licensed firearm dealers. No background check is required for sales by unlicensed individuals. This means that anyone can sell a gun to a stranger they meet online or at gun shows – with no background check, no questions asked, and no way to know whether the buyer is a criminal or otherwise prohibited from having guns.
Since the background check system was established 25 years ago, Congress has failed to close the loopholes that enable individuals including convicted felons, domestic abusers and people who have been adjudicated mentally ill by a court of law to buy guns without a background check. In that time, the internet has emerged as a massive, unregulated marketplace, where a recent investigation found nearly 1.2 million ads on Armslist.com were for firearm sales where no background check was required. The investigation also found that 1 in 9 people trying to buy a gun online would fail a background check, but that states that have passed a background checks law see nearly 85 percent of unlicensed online sellers indicate a check is required to complete the sale. H.R. 8 would update the background checks law to fit the times by requiring background checks on all gun sales — not just those sold in brick-and-mortar stores, but in all the places they’re sold today, including online or at gun shows.
More information about background checks is available at https://everytown.org/backgroundchecks