Gun Violence prevention
As of May 26, 2019, 73 of the 110 homicides committed in greater Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area have come from people being shot to death, including in Prince William County, according to the Washington Post. Gun violence also makes up an untold number of suicides and assaults in the region. It is possible to prevent people from killing other people or themselves without infringing upon someone’s Second Amendment rights for lawful self-defense and recreation.
This is why I signed onto legislation to require universal background checks (HB 140, 2018), prohibit bump stocks (HB 41, 2018) and allow localities to regulate firearms in government buildings (HB 261, 2018). I also support enacting “red flag” laws to allow a judge to issue an emergency substantial risk order to prohibit someone who is in imminent danger of hurting themselves or others from purchasing, possessing or transportation a firearm (HB 198 (2018) and HB 1763 (2019).
As we work across the aisle on this issue, we must involve our student constituents in the discussion. In May 2018, I hosted a student-led roundtable discussion with U.S. Senator Tim Kaine on gun-violence prevention at Manassas Park High School. Student participants from Manassas Park, Stonewall Jackson, Patriot and Hylton High School shared their stories, offered innovative policy solutions and stressed the critical need for gun violence prevention legislation as they feared for their safety in school and the local community. Our students and community deserve to live free from the threat of gun violence.
I’ll continue to support gun violence prevention bills where there is existing precedent in Virginia or other states for bipartisanship so we can get something done that is effective and data-driven.