Lt. Gov. Joins Gun Safety Advocates, Family Members of Gun Violence Victims to Call for Investment in State Office of Gun Violence Prevention

Lt. Gov. Austin Davis joined gun safety advocates and family members of gun violence victims at a Capitol news conference to call for an investment in the state Office of Gun Violence Prevention.

“Every Pennsylvanian, no matter what they look like or where they live, deserves to be safe and feel safe in their home and in their neighborhood,” said Davis. “We’re making strides to make Pennsylvania communities safer, but gun violence rates are still unacceptably high, particularly amongst young people. We can’t thrive as a Commonwealth if we aren’t delivering on the basic need for public safety in every neighborhood and in every community.

“Our investments in safer communities are making a difference, but we need to double-down on our efforts and make sure they’re even more effective. That’s why we need a statewide Office of Gun Violence Prevention to coordinate our efforts and make sure our investments are smart and strategic.”

The state Office of Gun Violence Prevention will focus on four key areas: community outreach and technical assistance; interagency coordination (federal, state and local); addressing intersections of gun violence with domestic violence; data, research and evaluation. Pennsylvania would be one of the first states in the country to stand up an Office of Gun Violence Prevention since the White House called on states to do so.

“With recent record investment in gun violence prevention from the federal government, Pennsylvania’s Office of Gun Violence Prevention will allow for crucial collaboration across the local, state, and federal level,” said Brady President Kris Brown. “Focusing on understanding trends in Pennsylvania’s gun violence, community outreach, and the critical intersection of domestic and gun violence will enable the Commonwealth to take a proactive approach to stopping gun violence before it happens. And Pennsylvania is leading the nation, joining only a handful of states prioritizing their citizens’ safety. Brady applauds Governor Shapiro and Lieutenant Governor Davis for continuing to champion this issue and bring all Pennsylvanians closer to a future free from gun violence.”

In launching the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, the Biden-Harris Administration recently released their “Safer States Initiative,” which encouraged states to set up their own gun violence prevention offices to coordinate across state agencies and with local and federal governments, build gun violence data collection and analysis capacity, develop and implement comprehensive strategies for addressing various types of gun violence and develop and implement a state plan to prevent targeted violence and effectively respond to incidents of mass shootings and surges in other forms of gun violence.