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Published: Friday, August 16, 2019 @ 11:01 AM
DAYTON — Mayor Nan Whaley joined a panel of mayors to discuss measures that they believe could help curb gun violence in America.
Joined by Virginia Beach Mayor Bobby Dyer, Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky and Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, Whaley spoke to CBS News about what they believe are the first steps in preventing gun violence.
“Universal background checks tied to risk protection orders together can make a difference,” Whaley said. “I’m hopeful that we’re starting to see this movement happen now.”
The bipartisan push included a letter sent to Senate leaders urging them to take action on current legislation that supports background checks.
“Mayors quickly move around the issue of gun control because it effects our communities so directly,” Whaley said. “You saw this past week 254 mayors sign a letter to say ‘Hey, Senate get to work and pass background checks.’”
She also refuted the argument that controlling gun violence is bipartisan issued, saying “It’s only a partisan issue in Washington DC...It’s not partisan in the streets of Dayton and the streets of Virginia Beach or on the streets of Parkland.”
When asked if she believes this is the moment that lawmakers will act on gun violence, Whaley answered, “I just pray it is.”
While the mayors disagree on some issues, such as whether assault rifles should be banned, they all believe in lending each other support as their communities work to heal after mass shooting.
Whaley said “hundreds” of mayors reached out to her after the Oregon District shooting on Aug. 4.
“That’s been very touching,” she added.
Mayor Bowser was one of those mayors, saying she sent Whaley a message “that we love her and that we’re with her.”
Though the Dayton area is still recovering, Whaley praised everyone’s ability to come together.