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Posts tagged as “gun violence”

City, County join in Gun BuyBack program

HOUSTON – As part of his One Safe Houston initiative, Mayor Sylvester Turner is holding a Gun Buyback program to reduce the number of guns on our streets. The City – County Partnership will reduce the number of Unwanted Guns on our streets.

To make Houston’s homes and streets safer and free from violence, Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner’s Office and Police Chief Troy Finner announce a gun buyback program that will take place July 30. With no questions asked, residents can turn in firearms in exchange for gift cards in the amount of $50, $100, $150 and $200 – depending on the type of gun. It’s part of a coordinated effort to reduce violent crimes.

The event, in partnership with Harris County Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis, the Houston Police Department, and Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, will take place from 8 a.m. – noon on Saturday, July 30, at 3826 Wheeler Ave.

We must act to stop Gun Violence

COUNTY CONNECTION
By Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo

Over the past month, our nation has yet again endured violent deaths from mass shootings and gun violence. In Buffalo, we all witnessed the brutal attack driven by racism and hate that left 13 people dead at a grocery store. 17 people were shot during a mass shooting in downtown Milwaukee. And we are all still mourning the loss of two teachers and 19 innocent children murdered at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde. This violence shows no sign of letting up – between May 24th, the day of the Uvalde tragedy, and June 6th, there have been 33 additional mass shootings, including multiple mass shootings here in Harris County. No one is immune from this bloody plague.

Today, our nation and our county is in the midst of a vital conversation about violent crime and what needs to be done to prevent it. The truth is, we cannot talk about addressing violent crime without talking about the role that guns play in fueling it. On the same day as the tragedy in Uvalde, we released new data from Harris County’s Institute for Forensic Sciences from which the conclusion could not be more clear – we are not just suffering from a rise in homicides, but also from a rise in the percentage of homicides caused by guns. In 2018, gunshot wounds caused 76% of homicides in Harris County. In 2021, that number was 84%. This year’s percentage is at 87%. And we aren’t unique. Statewide, the rate of gun homicides in Texas increased 90% between 2011 and 2020, from a little over 3 deaths per 100,000 people to about 6 deaths per 100,000.

Cornyn’s Senate Panel drafts new limited Gun Safety laws

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-Texas), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), along with Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Cory Booker (D- N.J.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Lindsey Graham (RS.C.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.), Angus King (I-Maine), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) issued the following statement:

“Today, we are announcing a commonsense, bipartisan proposal to protect America’s children, keep our schools safe, and reduce the threat of violence across our country. Families are scared, and it is our duty to come together and get something done that will help restore their sense of safety and security in their communities. Our plan increases needed mental health resources, improves school safety and support for students, and helps ensure dangerous criminals and those who are adjudicated as mentally ill can’t purchase weapons. Most importantly, our plan saves lives while also protecting the constitutional rights of law-abiding Americans. We look forward to earning broad, bipartisan support and passing our commonsense proposal into law.”

The proposal includes:

Abbott orders School Safety Study instead of Special Session on guns

Governor Greg Abbott, center, in Uvalde after the mass murder of 21 persons, announcing action that Texas will take to address the problem of mass shootings. Others at the press conference, L to R, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, Senator Ted Cruz, and House Speaker Dade Phelan. Abbott charged the leadership of the Senate and House with studying solutions that could be enacted by the State to curb future massacres.

AUSTIN – In lieu of calling a special session of the legislature to deal with new regulations to curb mass shootings, as requested by several state legislators, Governor Greg Abbott today sent a joint letter to Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick and Speaker Dade Phelan requesting the Texas legislative leaders convene special legislative committees following last week’s tragic shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde. The special legislative committees will be charged with examining and developing legislative recommendations on school safety, mental health, social media, police training, firearm safety, and more.

GCCISD Superintendent’s message on school safety

SUPERINTENDENT RANDAL O’BRIEN

In light of the events in Uvalde ISD, we would like to share Dr. O’Brien’s message to the community:

The tragedy that occurred in Uvalde ISD is truly devastating. Our hearts go out to the families and educators that have experienced this horrific crisis.

School safety is on the forefront of our minds at this moment, as it is for every school district. Goose Creek CISD has implemented measures that have strengthened the safety and security of our schools over the past few years.

Uvalde mass shooting stirs up Gun Control debate

A Texas town, and a nation, mourn for the senseless killings of 21 victims in Uvalde.

PROTESTS MOUNT AT NRA CONVENTION

HOUSTON – Protestors outside the NRA (National Rifle Association) national convention at GRB Convention Center this weekend, blamed the proliferation of guns and lack of regulations in Texas and nationwide with the increase in mass shootings, as evidenced recently in Texas with mass murders in Uvalde, Sante Fe, Sutherland Springs, El Paso, and Midland.

Last week’s school shooting of 19 victims at Robb Elementary in Uvalde has focused the public’s attention on the need for government leaders to increase restrictions on gun ownership, rather than loosen rules as has happened recently in Texas.

Speakers at the NRA Convention in Houston last weekend included Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, but Governor Abbott withdrew and sent a recorded message.

Speakers at the NRA convention talked of the increased safety by arming the public, but most public opinion rejected that theory, and called for action from government to bring a reduction in shootings. Proponents of restrictions in gun sales and military style weapons, point to experience in other countries, such as Australia and New Zealand, where total bans on guns has brought a sharp reduction in killings, both mass shootings and individual deaths.

Even in Texas, they point out that a ban on assault weapons was effective, but when it expired the number of deaths from mass shootings increased sharply.

Sen. Carol Alvarado on Gun Safety Reform

Austin, TX — The Texas Senate Democratic Caucus sent the following letter to Governor Abbott:

Dear Governor Abbott:

The members of the Texas Senate Democratic Caucus urge you to immediately call an emergency special session to address gun violence in Texas in the wake of this latest gut-wrenching tragedy. We demand that this special session include passage of legislation that would:

• Raise the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21;

• Require universal background checks for all firearm sales;

• Implement “red flag” laws to allow the temporary removal of firearms from those who are an imminent danger to themselves or others;

• Require a “cooling off” period for the purchase of a firearm; and

• Regulate civilian ownership of high capacity magazines.