The Arizona chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action issued the following statement after the Arizona Senate Judiciary Committee advanced HB 2316, dangerous legislation allowing guns in public spaces. If passed, this bill would effectively force public officials to allow guns in public buildings and at events held on public property across the state, including a number of places where guns would pose a serious risk, such as government buildings, concerts, demonstrations, and more. Lawmakers also voted to pass HB 2414, a bill allowing people to carry loaded guns in school parking lots.
“Lawmakers are showing their hand in prioritizing the gun lobby over our lives,” Rene Friedkin, a volunteer leader with the Arizona chapter Moms Demand Action. “It’s not too late for legislators to reject these bills that will endanger our community. They need to heed the advocacy efforts of Arizonans and make a decision that will protect us.”
Arizona has some of the weakest gun laws in the country, scoring only 8.5 out of 100 for gun law strength while maintaining a gun violence rate well above the national average. Despite this, state lawmakers continue to further weaken the state’s firearm laws. While lawmakers were focused on weakening gun laws, they failed to focus on passing domestic violence bills that would protect children and women by disarming domestic abusers. Recent polling shows that Arizonans support stronger gun laws — including a bill to disarm domestic abusers — by an overwhelming 8:1 margin.
In an average year, 1,155 people die by guns in the state, and 1,017 more are wounded. Guns are the third-leading cause of death among children and teens in Arizona. More information about gun violence in Arizona is available here.