Durbin Calls For Senate Action On Gun Violence At National Rally

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today spoke at the National Rally to End Gun Violence on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol and called for the Senate to vote on legislation that would help reduce the gun violence epidemic.  More than 200 days ago, the Bipartisan Background Checks Act (H.R.8) passed the House of Representatives on a bipartisan basis. Approximately 90 percent of Americans support universal background checks, including the vast majority of gun owners and NRA members. Federal background check legislation is particularly important to Chicago as 60 percent of illegal firearms recovered in the city come from out-of-state.

“This is not the time to ‘go very slowly,’ as the President has said,” Durbin said. “It is time for this President and the Republican majority in the United States Senate to stop stalling and let the Senate vote on H.R. 8 to require comprehensive background checks on gun sales.

Photos from the rally are available here.

Today’s rally was organized by Newtown Action Alliance, with support of dozens of grassroots gun-safety organizations that includes the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence.

Last year, Durbin and 10 of the largest hospitals serving Chicago launched the Chicago Hospital Engagement, Action, and Leadership (HEAL) Initiative, which is a collaboration aiming to reduce violence and improve health in Chicago’s most underserved neighborhoods. Recognizing their roles as the leading employers, the hospitals are making tangible commitments on actions—outside of their traditional health care roles—to uplift their communities.

Earlier this year, Durbin and U.S. Representative Danny Davis (D-IL-07) introduced the RISE from Trauma Act (Resilience Investment, Support, and Expansion). The bipartisan legislation seeks to increase support for children who have been exposed to Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and trauma, such as witnessing violence, parental addiction, or abuse. Expanding upon a GAO report, the legislation will also help to build the trauma informed workforce and increase resources for communities to support children who have experienced trauma.