CeaseFirePA pushing for gun prevention legislation amid violent weekend in Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH — Blue lights and crime scene tape seem to come on each night on our city streets, but gun violence has no boundaries in Western Pennsylvania.

“It’s not just one type of problem. There’s community violence in urban areas, there’s suicide in rural areas, there’s fear of mass shootings across our state,” said Josh Fleitman with CeaseFirePA.

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The answer to the growing violence, according to CeaseFirePA, is gun violence prevention legislation.

“There’s about five dozen pieces of legislation sitting in Harrisburg that would in some way or another help address the gun violence epidemic sweeping Pennsylvania,” Fleitman said.

Out of those 60, Channel 11 learned today that CeaseFirePA is pushing for three pieces of legislation. CeaseFirePA believes these bills will help without taking away gun owners’ rights. CeaseFirePA has even surveyed the public, with over 70% of Pennsylvanians backing the bills.

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“One red flag law to prevent suicides and mass shootings. Two to require the reporting of lost or stolen firearms which will help reduce the number of illegal guns that fuel our community violence. And three universal background checks,” Fleitman said.

None of these bills have made any progress and time is ticking as lawmakers prepare to return to session this fall.

“The General Assembly works in two yearlong sessions and this session is about to end at the end of the calendar year so all those five dozen bills will have to be reintroduced and the process starts back over,” Fleitman said.

We did reach out to state Rep. Rob Kauffman, who chairs the Judiciary Committee where the bills sit, but did not hear back.