ASSEMBLED A BLOC OF PUBLIC-SECTOR GUN PURCHASERS
Mayors, police chiefs, attorneys general, governors, county executives, sheriffs and DA’s from 123 cities, towns, counties and states across the U.S. have issued a joint Request for Information to major gun manufacturers seeking information on their safety technologies and distribution practices. Many of these officials have held public events with DNSIB or written letters to CEOs highlighting the need for safety innovation in the industry.
SUCCESSFULLY ENCOURAGED INVESTORS IN GUN MANUFACTURERS TO STAY INVESTED, USE THEIR POWER TO PRESS MANUFACTURERS TO CHANGE
DNSIB has encouraged institutional investors in firearms sector to stay invested and engage the companies and industry as a whole to take meaningful steps to prevent illegal sales, gun thefts, and to invest in creating safer / smarter products. DNSIB has developed a set of principles that we believe should guide this meaningful engagement. We call them the Bennett-Mosbacher Principles.
Metro IAF leaders working with the DNSIB campaign have attended annual shareholder meetings of Sturm Ruger and American Outdoor Brands Corp. (Smith & Wesson) for the last two years. In 2018, working with the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, we attended Sturm Ruger’s shareholder’s meeting a third time and helped to pass a shareholder resolution requiring the Board to report to shareholders on the use of their products in violent crimes, the liability and reputational risks to the company, and about their efforts to make safer products!
INTRODUCED SMART-GUN TECHNOLOGY TO LAW ENFORCEMENT LEADERS
DNSIB held the first-ever Smart Gun Show in 2014, gathering five top smart-gun developers with police chiefs, armorers, and officers from 9 departments in the Northeast. Officers were able to see and shoot smart-gun models for the first time. Across the country, DNSIB has worked strategically with law enforcement to highlight the growing demand for smart guns.
MOVED THE PRESIDENT TO USE FEDERAL PURCHASING POWER TO PUSH SMART GUNS
Through public pressure, direct discussions with the White House, and persistent work with allies in Congress, DNSIB got President Obama to adopt baseline standards to guide future federal government purchases of smart guns.
HIGHLIGHTED THE NEED FOR BETTER DISTRIBUTION PRACTICES IN THE GUN INDUSTRY
Using data and store visits, DNSIB has evaluated the practices of gun dealers in several cities and states. We have drawn media attention to the worst actors in the industry – the dealers with the highest rates of crime-gun sales and thefts – and have asked these dealers (in face-to-face meetings and/or public actions) to improve their practices. DNSIB has persuaded police departments to compile and release data showing the manufacturers of the largest number of crime guns recovered in their jurisdictions; we have published this data and called on the leading crime-gun manufacturers to strengthen their distribution chains. DNSIB has developed a model Authorized Dealer policy ending the practice (in cities like Chicago, where police officers purchase their own duty weapons) of taxpayer dollars being used to subsidize the worst area gun dealers.
ENGAGED GUN CEO’S IN DIRECT DISCUSSIONS ON HOW THEY CAN LEAD THEIR INDUSTRY ON SAFETY
DNSIB has diligently pursued discussions with gun industry CEOs. DNSIB teams have purchased stock and attended two gun company shareholders’ meetings. We have traveled to Europe to talk with CEOs of major European gun exporters to the U.S.; we found them by renting a booth at Europe’s largest gun show. We have had discussions with top leadership of four major manufacturers. In all of these discussions, we have asked CEOs to identify the obstacles to development of gun safety technologies and improved distribution chains. Our conclusion: Innovations and improvement in gun safety will be driven by market demand – and the industry is paying close attention to the growing demand for smart guns from public-sector gun purchasers. (In the meantime, DNSIB has built working relationships with leaders in the fledgling smart-gun industry.)
WORKED WITH LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT ON GUN SAFETY INITIATIVES
For example, our Cleveland affiliate (Greater Cleveland Congregations) provided public pressure and support that helped Cuyahoga County complete its long-promised ballistics lab, which finally opened in 2017 after years of delay. The lab will help police from Cleveland and surrounding communities solve gun-related crimes.