Giffords Launches Network of Companies to Fight for Gun Reform
Impact Network companies pledge nearly a million dollars to take action on gun safety
Washington, DC — Today, Giffords launched the “Giffords Impact Network,” a partnership between major American companies and the gun safety organization to leverage corporate brand-power and resources in the fight against gun violence. The Impact Network will provide companies with tailored support on advocacy, employee engagement, and policy to advance the gun violence prevention debate and take tangible steps to make communities safer.
“Gun safety isn’t a partisan issue—it’s on all of us to take a stand. Even when legislation stalled in Congress, American businesses stepped up to fight gun violence—not just with words but with actions,” said former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. “This year, Giffords will help companies take next steps to engage with their employees and customers as we continue the work to keep our kids and communities safe.”
The launch comes during a critical moment for gun safety, with new leadership in the White House, on Capitol Hill, and in state and local governments. It also comes as gun violence surges in cities across the country, compounding America’s struggle with the pandemic. The Impact Network will help make lasting change and progress by developing new capacity for companies to change attitudes and create the space for reforms to keep Americans safe. Founding Impact Network companies include Amalgamated Bank, DICK’S Sporting Goods, Kenneth Cole, Levi Strauss & Co., Lyft, Mesirow Financial, Northwell Health, Postmates, and TOMS. The companies have committed nearly a million dollars to gun violence prevention efforts.
Polling conducted by Global Strategy Group on behalf of Giffords shows that since the onset of COVID-19 and the murder of George Floyd, Americans overwhelmingly believe companies have the power and responsibility to influence social change–especially on gun safety. Nearly 85% of Americans believe businesses have a responsibility to make their communities safer, and 7 in 10 say they would be more favorable to a company who partnered with gun violence prevention organizations to raise awareness.
“The Giffords Impact Network will bring more companies into the gun safety movement and build out another front in the fight to save lives,” said Peter Ambler, Executive Director of Giffords. “Like Giffords has done with gun owners, veterans, and public health practitioners, harnessing the power of corporate brands to activate their consumers and engage their employees will help us achieve lasting progress on the issue.”
The Impact Network will help companies take meaningful steps to advance gun safety in the country and in their communities, including by:
- Helping companies engage on gun safety at the federal, state and local level, including organizing congressional outreach and participation in hearings; funding community-based violence intervention programs; drafting comments for the record to weigh in on gun safety-related rulemakings before federal agencies; and weighing in on local gun reform efforts in states where companies have a large footprint.
- Train employees at Impact Network companies, including on gun safety policy, organizing and advocacy training, and lessons on firearm safety practices like safe storage or how to petition for an Extreme Risk Protection Order.
- Work with companies on core-business issues related to gun safety to help ensure products and corporate policies are designed with gun violence prevention in mind.
- Host Impact Network summits to convene companies, survivors, young advocates, local nonprofits, and elected leaders to promote evidenced-based initiatives, unveil new research, and build new partnerships for future efforts.
“Amalgamated Bank believes financial institutions are important advocates for gun safety and for years we have taken steps to keep the communities where we live and work safe,” said Maura Keaney, First Vice President of Amalgamated Bank. ”We’re proud to join the Giffords Impact Network to help engage more companies in this critical fight to save lives.”
“We’re proud to join the Giffords Impact Network and help advance policies that can lead to positive change,” said Ed Stack, Executive Chairman of DICK’S Sporting Goods. “Keeping our communities and our youth safe is a priority for us, and we’re committed to be a part of this important work.”
“At Mesirow, we continue to raise our voices for social good, serving as advocates for issues made only more urgent by COVID-19 and the need to advance racial justice,” said Richard Price, Chairman and CEO of Mesirow Financial. “The Giffords Impact Network connects firms like ours with a system of partners and a playbook for action as we increase awareness around anti-gun violence and work together for a safer future.”
“Amid a pandemic, on-demand delivery can only thrive if local restaurants, neighbors, and a fleet of couriers feel safe in the communities in which they operate and live. The simple act of picking up food from a neighborhood corner store and delivering it to a customer down the road — is rooted in a mutual sense of trust and wellbeing for everyone on the platform,” said Vikrum Aiyer, former Vice President of Public Policy & Strategic Communications at Postmates (now acquired by Uber). “That’s why technologists should continue to join the Impact Network and stand with other leaders from the business community in speaking out for common sense gun safety laws . Because having the backs of neighbors, restaurants, chefs, and gig workers is not about politics–it’s about demanding a country where everyone can work — and live — without fear.”
“TOMS believes in a future where all people have a chance to thrive. As a part of that vision, we’re advocates for ending gun violence and have been a proud supporter of Giffords since 2018,” said Amy Smith, Chief Strategy & Impact Officer at TOMS. “We’re excited to now serve as a Founding Partner of the Giffords Impact Network to continue to lead this movement for corporate action on gun safety.”
“Gun violence is a public health crisis that needs a comprehensive public health approach,” said Michael Dowling, president and CEO of Northwell Health, New York’s largest health care provider and private employer. “The Giffords Impact Network does just that, an extraordinary effort that partners like-minded organizations to engage in meaningful dialogue and take action against the unnecessary bloodshed and suffering. We are happy to contribute to this important collaborative.”
“Gun safety is crucial in ensuring our communities can thrive and prosper,” said Anthony Foxx, Chief Policy Officer & Senior Advisor to the President & CEO of Lyft. “That’s why we are proud to support the Giffords Impact Network in their efforts to reduce gun violence, so that we can help keep both our riders and drivers safe.”
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