By Tom Gantert (Center Square)
Government officials across the country are looking to gun violence emergencies as a way to combat crime within their cities.
In Philadelphia, the mayoral candidates held a debate on Jan. 19 focused solely on gun violence.
“On my first day, I’m declaring a state of emergency on gun violence,” Helen Zimm, a Democratic mayoral candidate, said during a recorded debate. WPVI.
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Declaring a state of emergency gives governments additional powers and makes them eligible for more government financial aid, according to an executive order in many cities.
New York became the first state to declare a state of emergency due to gun violence in July 2021. It extended that state of emergency until February 15.
Rochester, NY, originally declared a gun violence emergency in July 2021 and extended Its state of emergency for 30 days on January 17.
In Rochester, emergency orders allow police off Businesses that are determined to be nuisances. Last December in the city case against the firearms industry in Rochester “for their role in the gun violence crisis,” according to a news release.
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City of Flint, Mi. announced A gun violence emergency in July 2021. The city said a state of emergency is still in place.
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City of Portland, Ore. implemented Gun violence emergency in July 2021. The mayor’s office confirmed that the state of emergency has been extended until February.
City of Blakely, Ga., announced A local state of emergency due to gun violence in July 2022. The city said the order will no longer be in effect. While the state of emergency was in effect, the city was able to enforce a midnight curfew and ban the sale of alcohol after 11 p.m.
And activists have called on their government to follow suit and implement a gun violence emergency.
The Oaklandside In June 2021, it was reported that the staff called “Emergency!” In an effort to declare a state of gun violence emergency in Alameda County, California.
In October 2022, California Congresswoman Barbara Lee and California US Senator Alex Padilla wrote a the letter US Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Javier Becerra has been urged to declare a national emergency due to gun violence.
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“Gun violence is currently the leading cause of premature death in the United States,” the lawmakers wrote in the letter, according to a news release. “Declaring a public health emergency regarding gun violence will fundamentally reshape how people perceive gun violence prevention efforts and recommit this nation to ending gun violence. When faced with a national public health crisis, the federal government marshals its resources to protect Americans and Gun violence should not be an exception.”
The National Rifle Association says emergency orders are not a solution to the shooting problem in cities like Philadelphia.
“There is no gun violence or gun crime without violent criminals,” NRA spokesman Lars Dalside told Center Square in an email. “Arresting, prosecuting and punishing the violent criminals who committed these heinous crimes is the only thing that will address this tragic epidemic of violence in Philadelphia.”
Everytown for Gun Safety did not respond to an email seeking comment.
Syndicated with permission from Center Square.