On Tuesday, 75 volunteers with the Iowa chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a part of Everytown for Gun Safety, made their way to the statehouse to urge lawmakers to support extreme risk legislation. Volunteers joined Iowa House Minority Whip Jo Oldson (D-Des Moines) and Iowa State Representative Kristin Sunde (D-West Des Moines) for a press conference to announce new extreme risk legislation, HF 2367, which was just introduced in the state House.
Volunteers drove from across the state to meet with lawmakers and encourage them to focus this legislative session on common-sense solutions to keep Iowans safe. During the day, volunteers held meetings with legislators to discuss the new extreme risk legislation.
The Mason City Globe Gazette reported:
“‘Not only do extreme risk laws save lives — they also have the support of the majority of Iowans,’ said Traci Kennedy, a volunteer with the Iowa chapter of Moms Demand Action. ‘As a gun owner myself, I can tell you it is possible to put an end to this gun violence and protect responsible gun owners’ right to own a gun.’”
Extreme risk laws are one of the most powerful tools for preventing mass shootings, school shootings, and especially gun suicides by creating a way to act before warning signs escalate into tragedies. In Iowa, there are an average of 264 gun deaths every year – 80 percent of these deaths are by gun suicide. Already, 17 other states, including neighboring Illinois, and the District of Columbia, have enacted an extreme risk law.
This week, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund launched a $250,000 digital ad campaign to call on Iowa legislators to pass an extreme risk bill, and unveiled Iowa polling which found three-quarters of Iowans support passage of such a bill.
Here are some photos from the Iowa Chapter’s Advocacy day:
More information about extreme risk laws is available here. Statistics about gun violence in Iowa are available here, and information on how Iowa’s gun laws compare to other states’ overall is available here.
If you have any questions, or would like to speak with volunteers with Iowa Moms Demand Action, Students Demand Action or survivors of gun violence, please don’t hesitate to reach out.