YWCA Greenwich joins call to protect women from gun violence

Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, co-founder of Americans for Responsible Solutions, and the YWCA Greenwich have called on Congress to pass bipartisan legislation that protects women and families from gun violence by keeping guns out of the hands domestic abusers and stalkers.

The call for action comes after the United States Senate held its first-ever hearing on the nexus of gun violence and domestic violence and what Congress can do to protect victims of violence. Ms. Giffords delivered a petition to Chairman U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) signed by 37,000 Americans earlier this year requesting the hearing.

“Dangerous people who get their hands on guns are a threat to women, families, and our communities. That’s why gun violence is a women’s issue,” Ms. Giffords said on the day of the hearing. “Today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing was an important first step on the road to strengthening our laws. So now it is time for Congress to come together, Republicans and Democrats, and pass legislation that helps protect women from gun violence. It is time for action. Women’s lives in Connecticut and across the country are at stake.”

Ms. Giffords’ call to action has the full support of the Greenwich YWCA.

“YWCA Greenwich, the sole licensed provider of domestic violence services in the community and the only YWCA in Connecticut to offer domestic abuse services, strongly supports Congressman Gifford’s legislative initiative,” Adrianne Singer, President and CEO of the YWCA Greenwich, said. “We are very much aware of how easy it is for an abusive confrontation to turn lethal. That is why, in conjunction with the Greenwich Police Department, YWCA Greenwich started a Lethality Assessment Program that has proven to reduce deaths in domestic violence situations. Guns have absolutely no place in the hands of domestic abusers,”

Ms. Singer continued, “With the successful passage of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in 2013, the YWCA remains committed to addressing violence against women through a renewed focus on domestic violence related homicide reduction. The YWCA strongly supports legislation that protects all victims of violence, particularly focusing on enforcement of current federal laws and closing loopholes that allow perpetrators of abuse and convicted stalkers access to firearms.”

According to the YWCA, “guns and domestic violence are a lethal mix in Connecticut and guns play a major role in violence against women by intimate partners.” From 2003-12, domestic violence homicides consisted of 41.4% of all homicides of women in Connecticut. Of these, 41.4% were committed with a gun.

Nationally, women are 11 times more likely to be murdered by a gun than women in other high-income countries; abused women are five times more likely to be killed by their abuser if the abuser owns a firearm. In 36 states, more than half of intimate partner-related homicides of women in each state involved a gun.

In addition, stalking affects one in six women in the United States, and more than three-quarters female intimate partner homicide victims were stalked before being murdered. It is time to pass comprehensive legislation to close existing loopholes to ensure that victims of violence are not vulnerable to gun violence at the hands of abusers and stalkers.

In 2014, six states — Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Washington and Wisconsin — have enacted domestic gun violence legislation that will protect women with overwhelming bipartisan support and little controversy. U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), a Greenwich resident, has been a leading voice in campaigning for this in the U.S. Senate.

By participating in the comments section of this site you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and User Agreement

© Hersam Acorn. All rights reserved. The Greenwich Post, 10 Corbin Drive, Floor 3, Darien, CT 06820

Designed by WPSHOWER

Powered by WordPress