U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke announced today that she has joined the Congressional Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, which will develop proposals to address gun violence.
The task force will consider restrictions on automatic and semi-automatic weapons, ways to stem gun trafficking, and identify methods to improve our mental health services and the system of background checks used to prevent harmful individuals from purchasing guns.
"We have a crisis around this nation -- gun violence that has resulted in tragedies from central Brooklyn to the suburbs of Denver to an elementary school in Connecticut," said Representative Yvette D. Clarke. "We need a comprehensive approach to eliminate gun violence across this nation."
In the next several weeks, members of the task force will hold meetings and hearings to determine the best policies to reduce and prevent gun violence, meeting with law enforcement officers, gun owners, and sportsmen's groups, gun manufacturers and retailers, mental health experts, gun violence prevention groups, members of the entertainment industry, education organizations and other experts.
"The threat of gun violence undermines the security of our communities," said Representative Clarke. "I believe the members of the 113th Congress must have the courage to eliminate this threat to our homeland security."
A comprehensive series of proposals will be released by the task force in early February.
Representative Clarke commended New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and members of the New York State Legislature on the enactment of a comprehensive gun control law to prohibit assault weapons, reduce the capacity size of magazines from 10 to seven bullets, increase penalties for crimes that involve a firearm, and prevent individuals who pose a danger to themselves or others from purchasing guns. I applaud the inclusion of the "Webster provision," which guarantees life-without-parole sentence for anyone convicted of killing a first responder, the women and men who risk their lives daily to keep us safe.
"This gun control law was enacted by a bipartisan coalition of Democrats and Republicans that wants to protect communities of New York State," said Representative Clarke. "I hope that my colleagues in Washington, D.C. will also work with President Obama to develop practical solutions that will protect every community in America."