FRIDAY 02/23/18

FEDERAL:

SUPPORT EXPANDED BACKGROUND CHECKS FOR GUN PURCHASES

In light of recent mass shootings in Florida, Las Vegas, Texas, and other cities across the country, it is clearer than ever that our approach to gun policy and gun violence must change. One such necessary change is to close background check loopholes. Currently, background checks are mandatory for commercial gun sales but not for purchases made through private sellers, at gun shows, or online.

To fix this serious problem, Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) introduced the Background Check Expansion Act, along with 31 Democrat co-sponsors, which would make background checks nearly universal. The bill would close the "gun show loophole" by mandating that all sellers run potential buyer information through the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). It would also require a licensed firearms dealer run a NICS check on buyers purchasing a gun from a private seller. The bill maintains some exceptions for law enforcement officials, loans for hunting and sporting events, or for immediate self-defense.

Sen. Murphy has been working to pass the expansion of background checks since 20 Newtown children were killed in his state. While he acknowledges the tough hurdles such legislation faces, especially from the NRA, public support for expanded background check has risen to 90%. Two of the 5 deadliest mass shootings in modern U.S. history happened in the span of 35 days this fall. The time for Congress to finally take action against rampant gun violence in this country is now.

Script for Senate:

Hi, my name is _______ and I’m a constituent from zip code _________. I'm calling to express my support for S. 2009, the Background Check Expansion Act. Closing loopholes that allow the wrong people to buy guns is a necessary step Congress must take to strengthen our current gun policies and protect Americans from the rampant gun violence devastating our country. Will Senator _______ support this legislation to expand background checks for gun purchases? Please take down my contact information so you can get back to me on where the Senator stands on this issue. I will be paying close attention. Thank you for taking my call.

 

Script for House:

Hi, my name is _______ and I’m a constituent from zip code _________. I'm calling to ask that Representative _________ support legislation to expand background checks for gun purchases. Closing loopholes that allow the wrong people to buy guns is a necessary step Congress must take to strengthen our current gun policies and protect Americans from the rampant gun violence devastating our country. Does Rep  _______ support legislation to expand background checks for gun purchases? Please take down my contact information so you can get back to me on where he/she stands on this important issue. I will be paying close attention. Thank you for taking my call.

____________

SAVE THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA)!

Last week, the House of Representatives passed H.R.620, the ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017, which removes incentives for businesses to proactively ensure that their establishments are accessible to people with disabilities.

Today, people with disabilities can sue inaccessible businesses that refuse to comply with ADA regulations. If H.R.620 becomes law, people with disabilities will have to notify businesses of any obstacles to access, wait six months for the business to act to address those issues, and will only then be able to take the business to court.

H.R.620 also protects businesses from any penalties for noncompliance, as long as they can show "substantial progress" in fixing issues. In practice, this means that people with disabilities could be forced to wait for access for months or even years while businesses “make progress” but don’t actually remove the obstacle/s. (Imagine your local grocery store telling you: “We’re building that ramp, but it’s going to take three years.”)

Now that H.R.620 has passed in the House, the bill goes to the Senate for consideration. Call your senators and tell them to vote NO on H.R.620 and PROTECT THE ADA!

All of our House members voted to gut the ADA. Let's demand that they explain their vote.

 

Background:

http://www.newsweek.com/house-republicans-americans-disabilities-act-civil-rights-808106

 

Script for Senate:

Hi, my name is _______ and I’m a constituent from zip code _________.  I’m calling because I’m very concerned that the so-called ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017 will make it harder for people with disabilities to go to school, work, shop, and live. H.R.620 will do nothing to stop so-called “frivolous lawsuits” but it will remove incentives for businesses to proactively ensure their establishment is accessible. This change is also bad for business because nearly 1 in 5 Americans lives with a disability. Will Senator _________ vote AGAINST H.R.620 and protect the rights of people with disabilities? Please take down my contact info so you can get back to me on where the Senator stands on this important issue. I will be paying close attention. Thank you for your time.

 

Script for House:

Hi, my name is _______ and I'm a constituent from zip code ________. I'm calling to ask Representative _________ to explain his/her vote for HR 620, the ADA Education and Reform Act. It is unacceptable to make individuals with disabilities responsible for ensuring businesses comply with the ADA. This bill goes against the spirit of the ADA and will hinder full access to local businesses for people with disabilities. I want Representative _____ to make a public statement explaining how this bill will help even ONE of his/her constituents with disabilities? Please take down my contact info so you can get back to me on when or if Rep _____ will address this issue. I need an answer. Thank you for your time and attention.

 

Senator Richard Burr

Washington, DC: (202) 224-3154

Winston-Salem: (336) 631-5125

 

Senator Thom Tillis

Washington, DC: (202) 224-6342 

High Point: (336) 885-0685

 

HOUSE:

Rep. Virginia Foxx

Clemmons, NC (336) 778-0211

Washington, DC (202) 225-2071

 

Rep. Ted Budd

Advance, NC (336) 998-1313

Washington, DC (202-225-4531

 

Rep. Mark Walker

Greensboro, NC (336) 333-5005

Washington, DC (202) 225-3065