CEOs speak out on gun violence, want congressional action

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On Thursday, more than 100 CEOs of major North American companies co-signed a letter to the U.S. Senate requesting action on American gun violence and the continued threat of mass shootings. The CEOs said they are in favor of background checks for firearm purchases and a “red flag” law that would allow courts to quickly issue protective orders. Here is the letter in full, including signatories. 

Dear Members of the Senate:

Our hearts are with the victims, their families and loved ones and all those affected by the tragic shootings in El Paso and West Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. These families became members of a club that no one wants to join: the millions of Americans whose lives have been forever altered by gun violence.

Every day, 100 Americans are shot and killed and hundreds more are wounded. These are more than mass shootings; in recent weeks, gun violence has devastated Chicago, Canoga Park, Newport News, Gilroy and Brooklyn, among others. This is a public health crisis that demands urgent action.

As leaders of some of America's most respected companies and those with significant business interests in the United States, we are writing to you because we have a responsibility and obligation to stand up for the safety of our employees, customers and all Americans in the communities we serve across the country. Doing nothing about America's gun violence crisis is simply unacceptable and it is time to stand with the American public on gun safety.

Gun violence in America is not inevitable; it's preventable. There are steps Congress can and must, take to prevent and reduce gun violence. We need our lawmakeis to support common-sense gun laws that could prevent tragedies like these.

That's why we urge the Senate to stand with the American public and take action on gun safety by passing a bill to require background checks on all gun sales and a strong Red Flag law that would allow courts to issue life-saving extreme risk protection orders.

Background checks and extreme risk laws (also referred to as "Red Flag laws") are proven to save lives. Since Congress established the background check system 25 years ago, background checks have blocked more than 3.5 million gun sales to prohibited purchasers, including to convicted felons, domestic abusers, and people who have been involuntarily committed.

However, in the decades since, the law requiring background checks on gun sales [has] not been updated to reflect how people buy guns today. The Senate must follow the House's lead by passing bipartisan legislation that would update the background checks law, helping to keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn't have them, in an effort to save lives. Background checks on all gun sales are a common-sense solution with overwhelming public support and are a critical step toward stemming the gun violence epidemic in this country.

Perpetrators of mass shootings, school shootings, and hate crimes often display warning signs before committing violent acts. Additionally, people who end their life with a gun also often show signs that they are in crisis before they act. Interventions in states with extreme risk laws have already prevented potential tragedies. Expanding extreme risk laws to enable families and law enforcement nationwide to intervene when someone is at serious risk of hurting themselves or others is critical to preventing future tragedies.

These proposals are common-sense, bipartisan and widely supported by the American public. It is time for the Senate to take action.

Sincerely, 

Brian Chesky, co-founder, head of community and CEO, AirBnB

Keith Mestrich, president and CEO, Amalgamated Bank

John Connaughton and Jonathan Lavine, Co-managing partners, and Rosh Bekenstein and Steve Pagliuca co-chairmen, Barn Capital

Ethan Brown co-founder and CEO, Beyond Meat

Peter T. Grauer, chairman, Bloomberg LP

Ric Clark, chairman, Brookfield Property Group

Fritz Lanman, CEO, ClassPass

Roger Lynch, CEO, Condé Nast

Ken Lin, founder and CEO, Credit Karma

Edward Stack, CEO, Dick’s Sporting Goods

Tony Xu, co-founder and CEO, DoorDash

Doug Baker, chairman and CEO, Ecolab

Richard Edelman, president and CEO, Edelman

Julia Hartz, co-founder and CEO, Eventbrite

Art Peck, CEO, Gap Inc.

Eddy Lu, CEO, Goat Group

Ben Lerer, co-founder and CEO, Group Nine Media

Yannick Bolloré, CEO, Havas Group

Bill Koenigsberg, president, CEO and founder, Horizon Media

Patrick O. Brown, M.D., Ph.D., founder and CEO, Impossible Foods

Michael Roth, chairman and CEO, Interpublic

Rob Frohwein, co-founder and CEO, and Kathryn Petralia, co-founder and president, Kabbage Inc. and Drum Technologies

Chip Bergh, president and CEO, Levi Strauss & Co.

Logan Green, co-founder and CEO, and John Zimmer, co-founder and President, Lyft

Dev Ittycheria, president and CEO, MongoDB Inc.

Howard Marks, co-chairman, Oaktree Capital Management

Todd McKinnon, co-founder and CEO, Okta

John Wren, chairman and CEO, Omnicom Group

Ben Silberrnann, co-founder and CEO, Pinterest

Bastian Lehmann, co-founder & CEO, Postmates

Hamid R. Moghadam, chairman and CEO, Prologis

Arthur Sadoun, chairman and CEO, Publicis Groupe

Steve Huffman, CEO, Reddit

Richard Fain, CEO, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.

Scott Rechler, chairman and CEO, RXR Realty

Jon Oringer, founder and CEO Shutterstock Inc.

Jack Dorsey, CEO, Square and Twitter

Anthony Casalena, founder and CEO, Square-space

Zander Lurie, CEO, SurveyMonkey

Arianna Huffington, founder and CEO, Thrive Global

Blake Mycoskie, founder and chief shoe giver, and Jim Alling, CEO, Toms

Jeff Lawson, co-founder and CEO, Twilio

Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO, Uber

Mark Read, CEO, WPP

Jeremy Stoppelman, co-founder and CEO, Yelp

Kevin P. Ryan, founder and CEO, AlleyCorp

Travis Truett, co-founder and CEO, Ambition

John W. Rogers Jr., founder, chairman and co-CEO, and Mellody Hobson, co-CEO, president, Ariel Investments LLC

Mike Steib, CEO, ArtsySean Knapp, co-founder and CEO, Asend.io

Andrei Cherny, co-founder and CEO, Aspiration

Abdur Chowdhury, CEO, Aura

Fahim M. Aziz, founder and CEO, Backpack

JJ Abrams, chairman and co-CEO, and Katie McGrath, co-CEO, Bad Robot

Ari Paparo, CEO, BeeswaxIO Corp.

Ryan Block, co-founder, Begin

John Borthwick, founder and CEO, Betwaorks

Raphael Crawford-Marks, co-founder and CEO, Bonusly

Darren Lachtman, co-founder, Brat

Trevor McFedries, CEO, Brud

Sameer Shariff, co-founder, Cambly

Analisa Goodlin, founder and CEO, Cathc&Release Inc.

Andrew Feldman, founder and CEO, Cerebras Systems

George Favvas, CEO, Circle Medical

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Alex MacCaw, CEO, Clearbit

Tyler Bosmeny, CEO, Clever

Matt Martin, co-founder and CEO, Clockwise

Othman Laraki, co-founder and CEO, Color Genomics

Jager McConnell, CEO, Crunchbase Inc.

Apu Gupta, co-founder and CEO, Curalate Inc.

David Oates, co-founder and CEO, Curtsy

Brian Ree, founder and CEO, DAILYLOOK

Saurabh Ladha, CEO, Doxel Inc

Andy Coravos, co-founder and CEO Elektra Labs

Laurene Powell Jobs, president, Emerson Collective

Pradeep Elankumaran, co-founder and CEO, Farmstead

Desiree Gruber, CEO, Full Picture

Jared Hecht, founder and CEO, Fundera

Jude Comila, founder and CEO, Goldenrick Nucci, co-founder and CEO, GuruKara Goldin, founder and CEO, Hint Inc.

Jeff Sellinger, co-founder and CEO, HipDot

Prena Gupta, CEO, Hooked

Cyrus Massoumi, managing partner, Humbition

Kristin Savilia, CEO, JOOR

Pierre Valade, CEO, Jumbo Privacy

William Martino, founder and CEO, Kadena

Jake Perlman-Farr, CEO, Kanga

Warren Shaeffer, co-founder and CEO, Knowable

Jack Altman, CEO, Lattice

Aaron N. Block, co-founder and managing director, MetaProp.vc

Afron Vechery, co-founder and CEO, Modern Fertility

Dan Parham, founder and CEO, and Tee Parham, founder and CTO, Neighborland

Shafqat Islam, CEO, NewsCred

Sarah Friar, CEO, Nextdorr

Athan Stephanopoulos, president, NowThis

Varsha Rao, CEO, Nurx

William E. Oberndorf, chairman, Oberndorf Enterprises

Steven Rosenblatt, co-founder and general partner, Oceans

Nick Huzar, co-founder and CEO, OfferUp

James Segil, co-founder and presidnet, Open-path

Jordan Husney, CEO, Parabol

Doug Aley, CEO, Paravision

John Milinovich, CEO, Plato Design

Rajat Suri, CEO, Presto

Christopher Gavigan, founder and CEO, Prima

Adam Regelmann, founder and COO, Quartzy

Nate Maslak, co-founder and CEO, and Nate Fox, co-founder and CTO, Ribbon Health

Zaxhariah Reitano, co-founder and CEO, Ro

Gary Beasley, co-founder and CEO, Roofstock

Stephen Ehikian, co-founder and CEO, Ruist

Brian Schechter, CEO, SelfMade

Olga Vidisheva, founder and CEO, Shoptiques Inc.

Dan Doctoroff, CEO, Sidewalk Labs

Jason Tan, CEO, Sift

Matt Cooper, CEO, Skillshare

Grant Jordan, CEO, SkySafe

Josh Guttman, co-founder and CEO and Florent Peyre, co-founder and president, Small Door

Michael Carvin, co-founder and CEO, Smary Asset

Aaron King, founder and CEO, Snapdocs Inc.

Neil Capel, CEO, Solve.io

Ben Hindman, co-founder and CEO, Splash

Evan Beard, founder and CEO, Standard Bots

Stanlee R. Gatti, founder, Stanlee R. Gatti Designs

Bradford Oberwager, CEO, Sundia Corp.

Ross Feinstein, CEO, Sunlight Health

Paul Budnitz, CEO, Superplastic

Ron Conway, founder, SV Angel

Heidi Zak, co-founder and co-CEO, and David Spector, co-founder and Co-CEO, ThirdLove

Yashar Nejati, CEO, Thisopenspace Inc.

Joshua Kushner, founder and managing partner, Thrive Capital

Chris Wang, CEO, ThunderCore Inc.

Corbett Kull, CEO, Tillable

Meghan Jewitt, CEO, Uniform Teeth

Nicholas Goldner, co-founder and CEO, and Chrisopher Bulow, co-founder and COO, Vioser Therapeutics

Ken Chong, CEO, Virtual Kitchen Co.

Irv Remedios, CEO, VoxerOliver Cameron, co-founder and CEO, Voyage

Chase Adam, co-founder and CEO, and Grace Garey, co-founder and COO, WatsiLiz Wessle, co-founder and CEO, WayUp

Bismarch Lepe, CEO, Wizeline

Dennis R. Mortensen, founder and CEO, x.ai inc.

Geoff Ralston, president, Y Combinator

Shan-Lyn Ma, co-founder and CEO, Zola


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