[Action Alert] Support Illinois Legislation to Stop Gun Violence

Join JCUA and our community partners in pushing for effective legislation in Illinois that can greatly reduce gun violence in Chicago. Sign the petition asking that all guns in Illinois be titled like cars. We need 100,000 signatures of concerned citizens, to bring lawmakers to vote on Illinois House Bill 5831.

by Lauren Goldstein
Organizing and Advocacy Intern, JCUA

ap-gun-violence-prayer-vigil-4_3_r536_c534On Wednesday, February 6, Marci Richards – director of the Peace Coalition Against Violence – presented to JCUA staff and lay leaders the important work she is doing to reduce violence in Chicago.

By promoting legislation targeting gun violence, and working with neighborhood clergy members to address root causes of violence, the Peace Coalition Against Violence hopes to see a sharp reduction in the number of lives lost in our city. One life lost is one life too many. Hence, JCUA is standing with the Peace Coalition to bring peace to our streets and to, as Ms. Richards stated, respect the sanctity of human life.

We ask that you join us and please help prevent gun violence in Chicago! By signing this petition, you will help pass Illinois House Bill 5831. This bill will require hand guns in the state of Illinois to be titled like cars, which will, in turn, reduce illegal gun trafficking and hold gun owners responsible for reporting lost and stolen weapons. While this is only a small step in reducing the violence plaguing our city, it is a step in the right direction.

Click here to read more about this bill and sign the petition to stand united as one city against the senseless violence that continues to strike families every single day.

Requiring guns be titled like cars will significantly reduce gun trafficking. Currently, the number one supplier of firearms recovered at Chicago’s crime scenes is a SINGLE  gun shop – Chuck’s Gun Shop in south-suburban Riverdale, IL. Clearly, as the nation’s homicide capital, Chicago has a trafficking issue. Read more from the New York Times here.

Titling guns can help in a number of ways:

  • It will make it impossible to legally sell a weapon to people with mental health concerns, or people with a history of violent crime, since such people will not be able to obtain a gun title.
  • Those in legal possession of a gun will have to report lost or stolen weapons, and they will be liable for any incident that occurs with a weapon registered to them.
  • Bulk traffickers will have a difficult time purchasing hundreds of guns downstate or at the Indiana border, since it will be costly to purchase titles for so many weapons.
  •  A weapon found at a crime scene will be traced to the legal licensed owner. While this owner may not have committed the crime, they may know to whom they sold or gave the weapon.
  • Individuals known to have a gun can be cross checked against lists of people not allowed to own guns, and illegally held weapons can be repossessed.

This bill does not violate anyone’s constitutional rights to bear arms. Instead, it holds those who choose to own a gun accountable. It only asks that gun owners act responsibly.

We are working with the Peace Coalition Against Violence and hope you will help us by signing this petition. There are tens of thousands of signatures already, and we hope to get over 100,000. Lawmakers have signaled that if the coalition achieved 100,000 signatures, the bill has a good chance to go up for a vote.

Root causes of violence, particularly amongst youth, will be addressed by this coalition over time. This legislation is the tip of the iceberg, but it is an important and effective way to start. We must move on this.

To quote Ms. Richards again, the bottom line is that “we are one city bleeding”, and every signature counts. Sign the petition, and share widely.

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