The Kansas chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, released the following statement urging Kansas Governor Laura Kelly to veto House Bill 2304, a bill that requires children enrolled in firearm safety training programs in public schools to go through the National Rifle Association’s “Eddie Eagle” program. The program was deemed ineffective by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
“HB 2304 places gun safety responsibility on children rather than their parents and guardians,” said Cori Sherman North, a volunteer with the Kansas chapter of Moms Demand Action. “It is always an adult’s responsibility to prevent unauthorized access to guns, not a curious child’s responsibility to avoid guns. Kansas lawmakers should be passing bills to help curb gun violence, not misplacing responsibility on children. We urge Governor Kelly, a proven champion of gun safety, to veto this bill, and focus on actual gun safety measures.”
Lawmakers passed this bill despite hearing testimony in opposition from Kansas Moms Demand Action volunteers and Kansas education professionals, including the Kansas State Board of Education, Kansas PTA, Kansas National Education Association.
In an average year, 456 people die and 655 are wounded by guns in Kansas. An average of 52 children and teens die by guns every year, of which 47% of these deaths are suicides and 49% are homicides. Gun violence in Kansas costs $1,958 per person each year. Gun deaths and injuries cost Kansas $5.7 billion each year, of which $95.1 million is paid by taxpayers
More information about gun violence in Kansas is available here.