FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 4, 2006
MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND BOSTON MAYOR MENINO ANNOUNCE EXPANSION OF COALTION OF MAYORS AGAINST ILLEGAL GUNS TO A TOTAL OF 52 MAYORS
Goal Set by Mayors at Recent Summit on Illegal Guns to Expand Coalition to 50 by the End of the Year is Fulfilled Six Months Ahead of Schedule
Growing Coalition of Mayors Pledge to Work Together in the Fight Against Illegal Guns
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino today announced the addition of 37 cities to the coalition of mayors who have pledged to join the fight against illegal guns. The 37 mayors join the group of 15 who convened for the first Mayor's Summit on Illegal Guns on April 25 at Gracie Mansion in New York City, where they discussed innovative law enforcement strategies, identified opportunities for greater coordination in combating the flow of illegal guns, and set a goal of expanding the group to a total of 50 mayors by the end of the year. In the span of little more than a month, 52 mayors from every region of the country, from Charleston to Little Rock to Houston to Los Angeles, and from both major political parties, have joined the coalition and expressed their support for the Statement of Principles, drafted and signed at the Summit. The new group of Mayors have committed to working with the coalition to strengthen the fight against illegal guns on the local, state, and federal levels.
"The fight against illegal guns is not rooted in ideology or partisanship, but in our most fundamental responsibility - enforcing the law and protecting the people we serve," said Mayor Bloomberg. "It's a national problem that requires national leadership, and that's why we're taking the fight across state lines and building a coalition of leaders who understand firsthand the devastation of gun violence. I'm encouraged by the bi-partisan support from mayors across the country, and I'm optimistic that together, we can develop a critical mass that begins turning the tide on illegal guns and those who traffic them."
"Getting illegal guns out of our cities and neighborhoods is a national problem that needs a national solution," said Mayor Menino. "I am proud that so many of my fellow mayors from across the country are joining us to send a loud message that we are not going to allow our streets to be overrun with violence and fear. By coming together and working in partnership, we can make each city in our nation a place of safety and peace."
The newest addition of mayors:
At the first Mayor's Summit on Illegal Guns, the mayors discussed cutting-edge policing strategies, legislative opportunities and the unique initiatives being undertaken on this issue. They also created a Statement of Principles pledging to continue the fight against illegal guns, to continue the dialogue, and to build a broader coalition of leaders across the country. To help fulfill the Statement of Principles the mayors signed and adopted, they identified a number of specific issues on which they could work together. This includes working with local law enforcement agencies and state representatives to maximize penalties for those who posses, use and traffic in illegal guns, as well as to work together to better share information and strategies for holding the worst gun dealers accountable for their actions. They also agreed to team up to oppose potentially damaging and limiting federal legislation, and continue sharing best practices and innovative policing and law enforcement strategies, including creating a website to serve as a resource to all participating cities.
Mayors Bloomberg and Menino were joined at the first Summit by Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Dallas Mayor Laura Miller, Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez, Jackson Mayor Frank Melton, Jersey City Mayor Jerramiah Healy, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Philadelphia Mayor John Street, Providence Mayor David Cicilline, Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels, Trenton Mayor Douglas Palmer, Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor, Washington, DC Mayor Anthony Williams and Yonkers Mayor Mayor Phil Amicone.
Stu Loeser/Virginia Lam (212) 788-2958
Seth Gitell (Boston) (617) 635-4500