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More Than 100 Tennessee Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action Volunteers, Gun Violence Survivors Rallied to Call for Action on Gun Safety and Celebrate 10 Years Life-Saving Work During Annual Advocacy Day

March 8, 2023

Gun Safety Advocates and Champions Called on Lawmakers to Reject Permitless Carry and Legislation to Lower the Age for Conceal and Carry, and to Instead Pass a Bill to Require Secure Firearm Storage in Cars

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Today, Tennessee Moms Demand Action, Students Demand Action volunteers and survivors, part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, gathered for their annual advocacy day at the statehouse to meet with lawmakers to oppose dangerous gun bills such as permitless carry and advocate for gun safety measures to be passed during this legislative session. This year’s advocacy day also coincides with the 10-year celebration of Moms Demand Action.

“During this legislative session we have spent countless hours testifying against bad gun bills — such as lowering the age to for permitless carry — that Republican lawmakers are trying to pass so we’re rallying today to make it clear to our lawmakers that we are not going to back down from the fight to keep our communities safe from gun violence, ” said Leeann Hewlett, a volunteer with the Tennessee chapter of Moms Demand Action. “We are ready to show up and work with lawmakers to pass common-sense gun safety laws — such as requiring secure firearm storage in cars that will protect our communities and save lives.”

Since the chapter’s founding 10 years ago, Moms Demand Action volunteers have been on the front lines fighting to protect communities across Tennessee from gun violence. In 2018, volunteers worked tirelessly to successfully defeat dangerous gun bills including permitless carry that would have allowed people to carry loaded handguns in public with no permit or training required, and kept people from carrying guns in schools. Last year, despite fervent attempts to advance a suite of dangerous gun bills, lawmakers closed the session without advancing a single gun lobby priority including bills that would lower the age requirement for carrying a concealed, loaded handgun in public from 21 to 18, and allow people with enhanced carry permits to carry firearms in all places at all times, with limited exceptions. 

This year’s advocacy day comes on the heels of volunteers spending countless hours testifying to prevent lawmakers from passing permitless carry in public, lowering the age for permitless carry from 21 to 18, permitless carry on college campuses, and arming teachers in schools. Volunteers will continue to call on lawmakers to reject these dangerous gun bills that will increase the risk for gun violence in communities across Tennessee.  

In an average year in Tennessee, 1,385 people die by guns. Gun violence costs Tennessee $18 billion each year. More information on gun violence in Tennessee is available here.

To speak to a local volunteer with Moms Demand Action, a volunteer with Students Demand Action, or a policy expert, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

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