In a pair of announcements, Pennsylvania senator Bob Casey Jr. and representatives Dwight Evans (D-03) and Madeleine Dean (D-04) introduced separate pieces of legislation to deal with growing gun violence in the country.
Casey and Evans teamed to announce the introduction of the Resources for Victims of Gun Violence Act to help all victims of gun violence, including survivors and their loved ones to coworkers and classmates, identify and access the resources available to them to help meet medical, legal, financial, and other needs.
The bill would establish an interagency Advisory Council to help victims navigate and use these resources, streamlining what can be a complex process in a Nation of gun violence survivors. Every year in America, approximately 100,000 individuals survive gun-related injuries. An estimated 10,000,000 individuals in the U.S. have been shot and injured in their lifetimes. In Philadelphia alone there have been more than 750 victims of gun violence in 2023, accounting for fatalities and injuries.
“While we continue to fight for commonsense measures to prevent gun violence in our communities, we owe it to survivors and their loved ones and caregivers to make sure they have the support they need to recover and move forward from gun violence,”said Casey. “The Resources for Victims of Gun Violence Act will better connect survivors, families, and caregivers to resources that support their recovery and help them manage the long-term of effects of these preventable tragedies.”
“Senator Casey and I introduced this legislation because we saw a need to better coordinate resources for victims and survivors of gun violence,” said Evans.“I thank Lt. Gov. Davis for implementing this common-sense idea at the state level – in addition to helping many Pennsylvanians, I think this will show how our legislation can help victims and survivors across the country. Pennsylvania is leading the way!”
Fellow Keystone State senator John Fetterman (D-PA) also co-sponsored the legislation, as did Reps. Brendan Boyle (D-02) and Susan Wild (PA-07).
Dean reintroduced the Protect Children Through Safe Gun Ownership Act, which would prevent child-involved gun violence. The legislation would require active supervision for a minor to possess a firearm and create requirements and education programs for safe firearm storage. Former Congressman Andy Levin (MI-11) previously introduced this bill that Dean co-sponsored in the last Congress.
“Every single day in the United States, eight children and teens are unintentionally shot in instances of improperly stored or misused firearms found in the home—this statistic is both terrifying and preventable,” she said. “Data shows that unsafe storage and unsupervised firearm use is an enormous danger to our children. I’m thankful to former Congressman Levin for introducing the Protect Children Through Safe Gun Ownership Act last Congress to combat this danger, and I will continue to advocate for it so that we can better protect children and save lives.”
“Gun violence is the leading cause of death for children in the United States. An entire generation is being lost to gun homicides, gun suicides, and unintentional shootings. These tragedies can be prevented when gun owners securely store their firearms in the home and adults properly supervise minors using firearms. The Protect Children Through Safe Gun Ownership Act would help protect youth from falling victim to gun violence. We applaud Congresswoman Dean for her leadership on this issue.” Adzi Vokhiwa, GIFFORDS Federal Affairs Director said.
GIFFORDS also supports the Casey/Evans bill.