Frankel calls on state, federal leaders to act in wake of latest terror attack

(Apr 29, 2019)

PITTSBURGH , APRIL 29 – As the nation once again finds itself grieving in the wake of a hate-inspired terror attack on a Jewish community, state Rep. Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, again calls for action by state and federal leaders. “I know that the victims, the congregants and the community in Poway, California, will feel the support, concern and love that our community received from all over the world,” Frankel said. “Nevertheless, this response is insufficient. Elected offices have failed to respond in a meaningful way to addressing crimes of hate fueled by weapons of mass destruction. “Once again a man filled with anti-Semitic bigotry targeted the Jewish community on Shabbat at the conclusion of Passover, this time on the six month anniversary of the tragic mass shooting at Tree of Life. Over the years I and many of my colleagues have repeated the mantra ‘Never Again.’ If we are going to be true to that goal, then those of us who have the power to give that call to action meaning must act.” Read more

 

Who is PA SAFE?

(Apr 10, 2019)

The Pennsylvania SAFE Caucus is a group of legislators who believe in working together to reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services; stronger tools for law enforcement; resources to deal with the effects of addiction and illegal drug trade; and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. State Rep. Dan Frankel, a founding member of PA SAFE Caucus. speaks in PIttsburgh following the deadly shooting at Tree of Life. Read more

 

Frankel: Squirrel Hill stands with Christchurch in wake of terror attack

(Mar 15, 2019)

PITTSBURGH, March 15 – Today state Rep. Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, issued the following statement regarding the horrific mass shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand: “Our hearts are broken by the horrific attack in New Zealand last night. The communities of Pittsburgh and Squirrel Hill stand with the people of Christchurch. Houses of faith are sacred and intimate, and hate-driven attacks on these places are attacks on all of humanity. "Pittsburgh reaches across the globe with our experience and our sorrow to help in any way that we can. "The scourge of ethnic and religious hate crimes must be fought unequivocally from all nations. New Zealand, we grieve with you, and we will fight alongside you to create a world free from intolerance. "I also want to encourage my community members to monitor their own well-being and that of their friends and neighbors. Community heals, and tragedy awakens trauma. Mental health services are available through Jewish Family and Community Services and The Center for Victims.” Frankel also reminded people that Mental health services are available through The Center for Victims’ 24/7 hotline at 1-866-644-2882 . Read more

 

Briggs working to end gun violence on first anniversary of Parkland shooting

(Feb 14, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 14 – State Rep. Tim Briggs, D-Montgomery, announced today that he is introducing gun safety legislation in the state legislature as the nation marks the first anniversary of the mass shooting in Parkland, Fla., where 17 students and staff were killed and another 17 were injured. “Keeping our communities safe from gun violence must be a top priority for Pennsylvania and the nation,” Briggs said. “I can think of no better way to honor the victims of Parkland, and the many other victims of gun violence throughout our country, than by enacting meaningful gun safety reforms to prevent future tragedies.” Briggs added that gun violence in the United States takes many forms, including accidental shootings and suicides by firearms that have impacted thousands of children and families. “Too often acts of gun violence could have been prevented with a few simple precautions,” Briggs said. “That’s why I am introducing commonsense legislation that will help put an end to gun violence by keeping guns out of the hands of Pennsylvania’s children. Those who fail to safely store their firearms are putting young lives at risk and should face consequences for their recklessness.” If passed, Briggs’ H.B. 525 would require the safe storage of firearms in homes where children may be present. Failure to comply with this rule would result in a third-degree felony if it is used Read more

 

Frankel, Fontana speak out on need for gun reform at local level

(Dec 14, 2018)

PITTSBURGH, Dec. 14 – Speaking at a news conference today, state Rep. Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, called for commonsense gun reforms at the local level and highlighted the need to empower Pittsburgh city officials to enact those measures. Joining Frankel at the event to call for local gun reform were state Sen. Wayne Fontana, D-Allegheny, Gov. Tom Wolf, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, city council members, gun safety advocates, gun violence victims and concerned residents. “We’re tired of inaction and stonewalling at the state level as residents continue to die in gun violence and mass shootings like the Tree of Life massacre,” Frankel said. “Our neighbors are demanding stronger protections from weapons, but our elected leaders’ hands are tied by provisions in state laws designed to block local action. That’s why I’m introducing legislation this week that would eliminate those provisions and pave the way for commonsense gun reform. “We can’t afford to wait any longer to protect residents and stem the violence. Other cities have acted to create local regulations for firearms. It’s time to act, before more lives are lost.” Fontana lauded renewed efforts by city officials and community activists to pass proposals similar to measures he recently introduced on the state level. They include bills that would ban assault weapons and allow family members or law enforcement to petition to have a gun Read more

 

In PA, it's time to move beyond fear, frustration & condolences

(Nov 02, 2018)

In the immediate aftermath of the tragic mass shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, public officials around the state reacted like everyone else: we mourned the victims, praised our brave police officers and other first responders, and talked about the need to respect and protect the life and dignity of every one of our state's residents. But public officials have a duty to move beyond condolences and prayers -- we have the power and responsibility to take action to make our schools, places of worship and neighborhood streets safer. That's why House Democratic members of the PA Safe Caucus are calling on those who control the agenda in the PA Legislature to commit to timely consideration of, and votes on, measures that already have been proposed to increase safety and reduce violence in our communities -- including legislation to pass universal background checks for the sale of all firearms in Pennsylvania. Republican leaders have slow-walked or outright blocked consideration and votes on these proposals for years while they've held the majority. Our frustration and outrage over the continued cycle of violence that plagues our schools and communities and menaces our residents should outweigh any fretting we have over whether addressing this issue now "politicizes" these tragedies. When foreign terrorists attacked our country in 2001, we didn't stop to worry about politicizing the issue, we immediately had the discussions we Read more

 

Frankel issues statement on Saturday shooting at Squirrel Hill synagogue

(Oct 27, 2018)

SQUIRREL HILL, Oct. 27 – State Rep. Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, issued the following statement in response to Saturday morning's shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue: "My heart aches for the loss to our city and our community. The Tree of Life has provided comfort and support to families for decades. Our whole community is in mourning. I stand with them, and all our neighbors in grief. "While today is a day of grieving, tomorrow we have to begin the discussion in our communities and our country about what it means when people with weapons are incited to violence, divided by hate and seeking scapegoats. It is terrible, terrible to live in fear. No community should feel like a target." Frankel represents the Squirrel Hill community in Pittsburgh as part of the 23 rd Legislative District. He is past chairman of the Pennsylvania Jewish Coalition. He also is the co-chairman of the PA SAFE Caucus in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, a group of legislators who believe in reducing all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services; stronger tools for law enforcement; resources to cure the effects of addiction and illegal drugs; and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. Read more

 

Comitta introduces legislation prohibiting loaded firearms in vehicles

(Sep 25, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 25 – State Rep. Carolyn Comitta, D-Chester, this week introduced legislation that would prohibit motorists from carrying loaded firearms in their vehicles. Comitta modeled the legislation in the wake of the June 2017 road-rage killing of Bayard Rustin High School graduate Bianca Roberson. “Bianca was a talented student with a bright future that was cut short due to a senseless act of violence,” Comitta said during a Capitol news conference announcing the bill today. “What happened to Bianca should never have happened. We cannot allow residents of the commonwealth to live in danger of firearm violence as a result of road rage.” H.B. 2669 would prohibit a person from carrying a loaded firearm in any vehicle, with the exception of firearms related to game hunting, law enforcement, military personnel or security drivers. A person who is found carrying a loaded firearm in a vehicle would be charged with a misdemeanor for a first offense, and a first-degree misdemeanor for a second or subsequent offense. “It might seem like a simple change, but studies show that drivers who have a firearm in their vehicle may be more prone to anger and more likely to engage in aggressive driving than those who did not have a gun,” Comitta said. “That gun should not be further ready to use. We already know that the mere presence of a gun in a home increases suicide rates and the Read more

 

Kirkland bill would require ID for firearm ammunition purchases

(Sep 13, 2018)

CHESTER, Sept. 13 – State Rep. Brian Kirkland, D-Delaware, is introducing legislation that would require people purchasing firearm ammunition to present an official form of photo identification. Currently, ammunition cannot be sold to anyone who sellers reasonably believe to be under the minimum age. However, sellers are not required to check a buyer’s ID to verify age. Kirkland’s legislation would require identification be presented every time ammunition is purchased, helping to eliminate illegal sales. “Protecting our communities from the horrific impact of gun violence is extremely important to me,” Kirkland said. “From Sandy Hook to Stoneman Douglas High School, we too often grieve the loss of precious life taken by those who should not have access to firearms and ammunition. “Sadly, young people, especially African Americans, Hispanics and Native Americans, face significantly higher-than-average risks of being a victim of gun-related homicide. We can – and we must – do everything in our power to curtail this epidemic, and this legislation is just one step of many necessary to take on this issue.” Kirkland said that photo ID is required to purchase alcohol, allergy medicine, lottery tickets and other items, so it is reasonable to require identification for purchasing the element that makes a firearm lethal. He said that his legislation would serve as reasonable reform to save lives without infringing Read more

 

Davidson applauds state funding for gun-violence reduction initiatives

(Sep 11, 2018)

UPPER DARBY, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Margo Davidson, D-Delaware, said she applauds Gov. Tom Wolf for allocating $1.5 million across the commonwealth for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding, which was announced Friday, was competitively awarded as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to provide municipalities money to reduce gun violence in communities. “I want to thank Governor Wolf for taking action to address this crisis,” said Davidson, vice chair of the PA SAFE Caucus. “Gun violence is an epidemic in Pennsylvania. In Upper Darby this past summer, there was an uptick in the number of shootings — a teenager killed at a house party, a storeowner nearly shot to death by a thief, a man shot while fleeing from two Upper Darby teenagers who stole his car. Last week, many parents were terrified to hear there was an online threat of a shooting at Upper Darby High School. Fortunately, someone was arrested before anything happened. “We need to urgently act in order to dramatically reduce gun violence in our area. This needed funding will empower municipalities by giving them greater access to tools and resources to fight this scourge, which is destroying our communities.” The Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ PA SAFE Caucus is committed to promoting legislation that would reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services, best use Read more

 

Comitta lauds Wolf for funding gun-violence reduction initiatives

(Sep 11, 2018)

WEST CHESTER, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Carolyn Comitta, D-Chester, today said she thanks Gov. Tom Wolf for allocating $1.5 million across the commonwealth for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding was competitively awarded to certain municipalities as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to reduce gun violence in communities. “I want to thank Governor Wolf for his leadership in working with local governments to address this crisis,” said Comitta, a member of the PA SAFE Caucus. “This funding is a step in the right direction in empowering our communities to reduce gun violence and create healthier, safer communities.” Comitta said the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ PA SAFE Caucus is dedicated to promoting legislation that would reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services, best use of new and existing law-enforcement tools, resources to curb effects of addiction and illegal drugs, and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. “Gun violence has claimed the lives of too many Pennsylvanians,” Comitta said. “It is going to take all of us in state and local government working together to put an end to gun violence in Pennsylvania. This is good government putting people first.” Read more

 

Comitta lauds Wolf for funding gun-violence reduction initiatives

(Sep 11, 2018)

WEST CHESTER, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Carolyn Comitta, D-Chester, today said she thanks Gov. Tom Wolf for allocating $1.5 million across the commonwealth for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding was competitively awarded to certain municipalities as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to reduce gun violence in communities. “I want to thank Governor Wolf for his leadership in working with local governments to address this crisis,” said Comitta, a member of the PA SAFE Caucus. “This funding is a step in the right direction in empowering our communities to reduce gun violence and create healthier, safer communities.” Comitta said the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ PA SAFE Caucus is dedicated to promoting legislation that would reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services, best use of new and existing law-enforcement tools, resources to curb effects of addiction and illegal drugs, and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. “Gun violence has claimed the lives of too many Pennsylvanians,” Comitta said. “It is going to take all of us in state and local government working together to put an end to gun violence in Pennsylvania. This is good government putting people first.” Read more

 

Davis thanks Gov. Wolf for state funding for gun violence reduction initiatives

(Sep 11, 2018)

LEVITTOWN, Sept. 11 – State Rep. Tina Davis, D-Bucks, thanked Gov. Tom Wolf for allocating $1.5 million in funding to be distributed across the commonwealth for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding was competitively awarded as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to provide municipalities with the funds to implement strategies aimed at reducing gun violence in communities. “I want to thank Governor Wolf for working with local governments to address this crisis,” said Davis, a member of the PA Safe Caucus. “This funding is a step in the right direction in empowering our communities to reduce gun violence and create healthier, safer communities.” Davis said the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ PA SAFE Caucus is committed to promoting legislation that would reduce all types of violence in society through adequate funding for mental health services, best use of new and existing law-enforcement tools, resources to curb effects of addiction and illegal drugs, and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. “Gun violence is an everyday reality for too many Pennsylvanians,” Davis said. “It is going to take all of us in state and local government working together to put an end to gun violence in Pennsylvania. This is good government putting people first.” Read more

 

Warren introduces bill to require near-universal background checks in Pa.

(Sep 05, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 5 – State Rep. Perry Warren, D-Bucks, today announced he has introduced H.B. 2621, which would expand background check requirements in Pennsylvania by eliminating all exceptions to the requirement except for family transfers. Currently, the Crimes Code requires background checks for the sale of all handguns, or sales conducted by a federally licensed dealer. Background checks are not required for the private sale of “long guns.” “I’ve introduced this legislation to ensure that we are doing everything we can to protect the residents of the commonwealth by preventing unauthorized people from purchasing firearms,” Warren said. “As a representative and vice-chairman of the House PA SAFE Caucus I have always been – and will continue to be – an advocate for legislative initiatives that respect the Second Amendment while promoting gun safety.” House Bill 2621 contains language from H.B. 1010, introduced in the previous session, including the elimination of most background check exemptions or the “gun-show loophole” and would require that all firearm sales, regardless of the barrel length, be conducted in front of a licensed importer, manufacturer, dealer or county sheriff. Private sales currently exempted from background checks include “any shotgun with a barrel length of less than 18 inches, any rifle with a barrel length of less than 16 inches or any firearm with an Read more

 

Krueger-Braneky, Moms Demand Action, Domestic Abuse Project advocate for H.B. 2060

(Sep 04, 2018)

MEDIA, Sept. 4 – State Rep. Leanne Krueger-Braneky today in the County Government Center joined Moms Demand Action, Domestic Abuse Project of Delaware County and other elected officials to call for the passage of H.B. 2060, legislation to tighten the time frame and manner in which court-ordered defendants in domestic violence cases have to surrender their firearms. Under the legislation, those convicted of a domestic violence crime would have 48 hours to give up their firearms to a law enforcement agency, a federally licensed firearms dealer or their lawyer. Under current law, people convicted of domestic violence have 60 days and can give their guns to a relative, friend or neighbor. “Statistics show that a woman is five times more likely to be shot and killed by a domestic abuser when guns are present, so the stakes are high to get this bill signed into law,” said Krueger-Braneky, D-Delaware. “The Senate unanimously passed legislation nearly identical to House Bill 2060, so I don’t see any reason this should not be the first bill on the agenda when we return to session later this month. “This legislation can turn victims into survivors by giving them the confidence to file a PFA, because they can know that the guns in the household will be more safely addressed. “One more life lost due to inaction is one too many. The speaker of the House and the House majority leader need to schedule a floor vote this Read more

 

House Judiciary Committee to consider gun safety reform measures

(Jun 15, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 15 – The Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee will consider several gun safety reform measures at its meeting Tuesday. The voting meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m. Tuesday in Room 140 of the Main Capitol building. The agenda includes several measures that the PA SAFE Caucus has advocated for. The list of bills to be considered include: H.B. 1400, which would close a loophole to create universal background checks for gun purchases H.B. 1872, which would ban devices such as “bump stocks” that assist in rapid firing H.B. 2060, which would ensure that domestic abusers be required to relinquish weapons to an appropriate authority H.B. 2227, which would allow concerned family members and law enforcement to file for extreme risk protective orders to prohibit firearm possession by individuals who are at risk or causing harm to themselves or others H.B. 273, which would allow people with mental or physical health concerns to voluntarily surrender their firearms Find the full agenda at this link . The PA SAFE Caucus is a group of legislators who believe in reducing all types of violence in society, through adequate funding for mental health services; best use of new and existing law-enforcement tools; resources to curb the effects of addiction and illegal drugs; and solutions that reduce gun violence and promote public safety. Read more

 

Vitali calls for action on gun bills during Delaware County rally

(Apr 05, 2018)

MEDIA, April 5 – State Rep. Greg Vitali joined lawmakers and organizers from Delaware County United for Sensible Gun Policy at the county courthouse steps today to call for the advancement of H.B. 1400, for universal background checks on gun sales in Pennsylvania, and H.B. 1872, a statewide ban on multiburst trigger activators, including bump stocks. Vitali, D-Delaware/Montgomery, is a cosponsor of both bills and said he hopes that the legislation will receive prompt votes following a set of public hearings on gun bills slated for next week in Harrisburg. “The issue of gun violence prevention has hit its tipping point, and it’s time these commonsense bills become law,” he said. “Expanded background checks for gun shows and private sales are widely supported by Pennsylvanians. A ban on devices designed to turn rifles into illegal machine guns is also supported by most Americans, especially since one was used in the Las Vegas shooting in October, our nation’s most deadly mass shooting. “The reaction to the most recent mass shooting in Parkland has shed much-needed light on the dark affairs that suppress the passage of sensible gun safety laws, and we lawmakers are here to pressure leaders in the Capitol so we can vote in the interests of our constituents.” The public hearings, called for by the House Judiciary Committee, will take place Monday through Thursday. Vitali also is a cosponsor of the following Read more

 

Demand a Hearing on Gun Safety Legislation Today

(Feb 21, 2018)

In the words of David Hogg, Parkland Florida Student: “This is not just another mass shooting. No shooting is just another mass shooting. This needs to be a turning point.” Demand Action Here: http://www.pahouse.com/PASafe/Hearing/ActNow/ #ParklandFlorida #GunReformNow #Enough Read more

 

Commonsense Measures Proposed by PA SAFE Caucus

(Feb 16, 2018)

Members of the PA SAFE Caucus have proposed a number of bills that would implement common sense measures to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and protect communities across the Commonwealth. Read more

 

Demand a Hearing on Gun Safety Legislation Today

(Feb 16, 2018)

Tell Chairman Ron Marsico to call for a hearing on firearm safety legislation in the House Judiciary Committee today, and for Speaker Mike Turzai and Leader Dave Reed to stop stalling on safety legislation! Read more

 

Frankel calls on state, federal leaders to act in wake of latest terror attack
Apr 29, 2019

Who is PA SAFE?
Apr 10, 2019

Frankel: Squirrel Hill stands with Christchurch in wake of terror attack
Mar 15, 2019

Briggs working to end gun violence on first anniversary of Parkland shooting
Feb 14, 2019

Frankel, Fontana speak out on need for gun reform at local level
Dec 14, 2018

In PA, it's time to move beyond fear, frustration & condolences
Nov 02, 2018

Frankel issues statement on Saturday shooting at Squirrel Hill synagogue
Oct 27, 2018

Comitta introduces legislation prohibiting loaded firearms in vehicles
Sep 25, 2018

Kirkland bill would require ID for firearm ammunition purchases
Sep 13, 2018

Davidson applauds state funding for gun-violence reduction initiatives
Sep 11, 2018

Comitta lauds Wolf for funding gun-violence reduction initiatives
Sep 11, 2018

Comitta lauds Wolf for funding gun-violence reduction initiatives
Sep 11, 2018

Davis thanks Gov. Wolf for state funding for gun violence reduction initiatives
Sep 11, 2018

Warren introduces bill to require near-universal background checks in Pa.
Sep 05, 2018

Krueger-Braneky, Moms Demand Action, Domestic Abuse Project advocate for H.B. 2060
Sep 04, 2018

House Judiciary Committee to consider gun safety reform measures
Jun 15, 2018

Vitali calls for action on gun bills during Delaware County rally
Apr 05, 2018

Demand a Hearing on Gun Safety Legislation Today
Feb 21, 2018

Commonsense Measures Proposed by PA SAFE Caucus
Feb 16, 2018

Demand a Hearing on Gun Safety Legislation Today
Feb 16, 2018