The governors of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York and Connecticut have teamed up to track and trace illegal guns. But gun violence prevention advocates say it’s not enough.
“All these efforts are taking place after a shooting happens,” Jeremy Stein, executive director of Connecticut Against Gun Violence, says.
Stein applauded the state's partnership but says it’s not enough.
“It’s also about trying to figure out solutions as to why people in communities resort to gun violence in the first place,” Stein says.
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The agreement between New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York and Connecticut says they will share data about illegal guns.
“A little like the war on drugs you don’t want to just go after the kid with the nickel bag, that kid with a pistol, we’re going take care of them, but I want to go after the king pins,” Gov. Ned Lamont says.
Lamont says Connecticut sees guns come down from the north and up from the south.
“I want to go after those pushers. I want to go after those big drug and gun wholesalers. Those big guns so to speak,” Lamont says.
“Ideally we’ll get some national action on this,” Lamont says.
The governors held a virtual press conference to make the announcement.
“We know that gun violence and gun homicide rates have risen over the past year,” Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf says.
Wolf says Covid-19 had an impact.
“The isolation that many experienced, at least this has been our experience in Pennsylvania, also stripped away support networks and safety nets. The same time it caused increasing stress, anxiety, fear and clearly anger,” Wolf says.
Stein says they need to look at preventing violence before it begins.
“If you have less jobs, less opportunity, lower quality of life those are all things that increase violence in our cities,” Stein says.