Hi there,

I’m sure you’ve continued to see the news about the heartbreaking mass shootings in places like Uvalde, Buffalo and Tulsa in recent weeks. Gun violence is now the leading cause of death for young Americans – not car accidents, not drug overdoses, not cancer.

This epidemic is taking far too many lives, and that’s why the House passed a package of legislation this month aimed at keeping our kids safe and curbing this crisis. One of the bills we passed was my Safe Guns, Safe Kids Act, a safe gun storage bill I introduced after the shooting at Oxford High School last November.

My team and I began working on this bill just weeks after the tragedy in Oxford that took the lives of four high school students, and it is based on the events that happened in that horrible shooting. We focused on building a serious, practical piece of legislation that would make a real difference in preventing similar tragedies in the future. Through conversations and meetings with first responders, community members, hunters, sportsmen, and other folks on the ground, it became clear that ensuring the safe storage of guns was essential. 

We settled on an idea that’s pretty simple: gun owners who have children living in the home must take reasonable steps to secure their firearms, and can be held criminally responsible if they fail to do so and people get killed. 

It’s a straightforward idea that’s meant to encourage responsible gun ownership and to keep our kids safe. Most Michiganders do this already as a matter of habit.

The day after the shooting in Uvalde, I was coincidentally scheduled to speak at the Oxford Virtual Academy graduation. It was a deeply emotional moment for the students, their families, and school staff, with so many raw emotions bubbling up after the tragedy in Texas.

No community should ever have to undergo that pain and grief. Our response to similar shootings over the last decade has always been the same: an outcry for change, followed by marches and protests, but no legislative action. This time appears to be different. The Senate appears to have reached a bipartisan deal on mental health and gun safety, which I hope will hold.

As the representative of a community that’s experienced the immense pain of a school shooting, I’m committed to getting a bill signed into law that will protect our kids and help prevent this kind of violence in the future.

That’s why I’m encouraged by the bipartisan framework the Senate has developed and am eager to vote on it as quickly as possible. It’s a compromise, but would, if passed, represent bipartisan consensus for the first time in 25 years.
– Rep. Elissa Slotkin