Last month, Bishop Dennis Sullivan joined members of the Coalition of Religious Leaders of New Jersey in urging the state’s political leaders to pass two pieces of public safety legislation, and make their communities safer.
Senate Bill 2786/Assembly Bill 4218 would require every restrained or convicted domestic abuser to immediately turn in his or her guns to prevent them from again harming victims after a prison stay or court visit.
Senate Bill 2785/Assembly Bill 4348 would require buyers of rifles and shotguns to pass a background check before every sale, whether obtaining a weapon directly through a dealer, or through an online stranger.
“As spiritual advisors, we are often a shoulder to cry on — and always deeply invested in the hopes, dreams and anxieties of our congregants,” said a letter sent to lawmakers, signed by Bishop Sullivan and state faith leaders.
“We’ve seen firsthand the devastating impact that domestic violence and gun violence can have on families, on loved ones, on an entire community. These important bills will help to heal New Jersey. Over 270 New Jerseyans are killed with guns each year. That’s far too many lives lost- and we need our leaders to fight for people in danger.
At press time, Senate Bills 2785 and 2786 are in the hands of the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee. Assembly Bill 4348 is with the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee, while Assembly Bill 4218 was passed by a vote of 5-0, with 3 abstentions, in the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee, and referred, with amendments, to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.