This summer, we celebrated the passage of the Safer Communities Act signed into law by President Joe Biden marking the first major gun violence prevention legislation in almost 30 years. This milestone is a direct result of countless advocates, researchers and organizers across the country working tirelessly to make our communities safer. While it’s a step forward, there is still more work to do. We lost ground in June when the Supreme Court expanded the scope of the Second Amendment – a decision which will escalate gun violence.
We are also troubled that some aspects of the Safer Communities Act could cause unintentional harm, especially for communities of color. As a foundation with a longtime commitment to combatting gun violence, we know gun violence is a preventable public health epidemic that devastates communities and disproportionately harms communities of color. We will continue to support organizations engaged in research, policy advocacy, and innovative models to address gun violence.
Gun violence continues to pervade all aspects of everyday life. On July 4, a gunman in Chicago opened fire into a crowd celebrating the holiday at a parade, killing seven people and injuring dozens. There has been an unmistakable rise in mass shootings in the U.S. and daily gun violence continues to destabilize communities. It’s tempting to give up hope. We appreciate this article by long-time partner in the work, Nina Vinik on how we might start making culture change. And are excited to see Hope and Heal Fund lead a narrative change campaign on gun violence restraining orders. We can and must invest in the solutions that work.