Lawmakers call on retailers to help reduce gun violence - CBS 3 Springfield - WSHM

Lawmakers call on retailers to take measures in reducing gun violence

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Lawmakers urged retailers to join the fight against gun violence. (WFSB photo) Lawmakers urged retailers to join the fight against gun violence. (WFSB photo)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

As a way to reduce gun violence, elected leaders urged retailers to consider voluntary measures to make their stores safer.

U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy joined Rep. Elizabeth Esty, Ron Pinciaro of Connecticut Against Gun Violence and Monte Frank of Team 26 to pass tougher gun laws.

"Retail stores seem to be a place where these tragedies occur with increasing and pervasive frequency," said Blumenthal at a press conference Friday. "Nowhere are Americans more vulnerable than at restaurants and retail stores."

The officials called on the National Retail Federation to join the bipartisan push for "commonsense measures to reduce gun violence."

The legislators said there have been an estimated 79 shootings and 19 fatalities at Walmart alone since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

They also referred to the loaded handgun that was found in the toy aisle of a Target in South Carolina recently. There have also been a number of shootings at Walmarts across the country

Blumenthal, Murphy and Esty said they urge members of the National Retail Federation to take precautions to reduce gun violence and support reform.

Lawmakers said all of this should encourage retailers to demand more sensible gun control. Some smaller retail chains have taken their own steps. Chipotle and Sonic have new policies that do not allow people to carry guns in their restaurants.

"Safety is a concern for all retailers" as to whether larger chains should prohibit guns from being carried in their stores," said a spokesperson for the National Retail Federation. "There is not a one size fits all solution. We can't speak for individual companies on specific policies."

Carlee Soto's life has changed because of gun violence. Her sister, Victoria was killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School, trying to save her students. 

"I can't even imagine why nothing has been done. Millions of Americans have been killed and no one is taking action," Carlee Soto said. "Our leaders in Washington aren't doing enough."

Last year, Connecticut passed some of the toughest gun laws in the country. Despite a push from the president, the United States Congress has not been able to agree on any legislation.

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