Gabby Giffords & Mark Kelly Tour Salem Center for Domestic Violence Survivors

May 13, 2015 – Speaking today at a Salem nonprofit that serves survivors of domestic violence, former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and retired Navy combat veteran and NASA astronaut Capt. Mark Kelly, the Co-Founders of Americans for Responsible Solutions (ARS), called on Oregon’s leaders to pass commonsense legislation that protects women and families by ensuring domestic abusers don’t have easy access to guns.

Congresswoman Giffords and Capt. Kelly spoke at Salem’s Center for Hope and Safety, which serves survivors of domestic and sexual violence, and stalking, and toured the facility with the organization’s Executive Director.

“Dangerous people with guns are a threat to women. That makes gun violence a women’s issue – for mothers, for families, for me and you,” said Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, a gun owner and strong supporter of the Second Amendment and responsible gun ownership, in remarks during the visit. “Women can lead the way. Together, we can change our laws.”

“Guns and domestic violence are a tragic and often deadly mix. Our leaders need to do more to help keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers – and make women and families safer from gun violence” said Captain Mark Kelly, a retired NASA astronaut and gun owner. “The proposal currently before the Oregon State Senate would make some small, commonsense changes to current laws and give Oregon’s law enforcement officials the tools they need to protect victims of domestic violence and ensure abusers don’t have easy access to guns. Gabby and I hope Oregon will continue to lead the way in protecting the rights of responsible, law-abiding gun owners and keeping guns out of dangerous hands.”

A bill before the Oregon State Senate, SB 525,  help close gaps in Oregon law by ensuring that individuals convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence can’t or named in a restraining order that has been upheld in a court hearing can’t have legal access to guns.

Nationally, women in the U.S. are 11 times likely to be murdered with a gun than women in other developed countries, and more than half of all murders of America’s women are committed with a gun. Abused women are also five times more likely to be killed by their abuser if that individual has access to a firearm.

Earlier this week, Oregon became the 18th state to require background checks for all gun sales, and the eighth since the founding of Americans for Responsible Solutions.