Last Wednesday, at 5 a.m. a group of more than 50 Evanstonians (and some Skokie and Chicago residents) boarded a bus to Springfield to join Moms Demand Action and push for sensible gun legislation.
We were lucky that our trip down--and the advocacy day planned by Moms Demand Action months ago--fell on the day that seven gun bills were heard on the floor of the House of Representatives and that we were there to witness the historic passage of HB 1657 Gun-Dealer Licensing, the banning of bump stocks, raising the age to 21 for buying an assault weapon, and adding a 72-hour waiting period before purchasing one.
The gun-dealer licensing measure would require employees to undergo background checks and dealers to have video surveillance systems as part of an effort to cut down on straw purchases, among other requirements. Currently, while manicurists, dog groomers, hairstylists, massage therapists, and other professionals must be licensed annually by the state, gun dealers can do business without one.
This video documents our trip--our bus ride during which community leaders spoke (Betsy Storm of Moms Demand Action Evanston, Karen Haber Smith who spoke about Curt's Cafe, Eileen Soderstrom of People for a Safer Society, Jennifer Moran of the Evanston Community Foundation's Leadership Evanston program, and Laura Tanner Swinand of Indivisible Evanston.
It also shows highlights of our visits with State Reps. Laura Fine (17th), Robyn Gabel (18th), and Kelly Cassidy (14); the rally we attended during which gun violence survivors, activists, and bill sponsors St. Sen. Don Harmon (D) and St. Rep. Kathleen Willis (R) spoke; and some shots from the gallery of action on the House floor.
The bill is now on Governor Rauner's desk. CALL RAUNER NOW AND ASK HIM TO SIGN SB1657 INTO LAW at 217-782-0244!