On February 14, the League of Women Voters of Connecticut and its members from across the state will celebrate the 93rd anniversary of the founding of the national organization by joining Connecticut citizens of all ages for the “March for Change” at the State Capital in Hartford to demand safer gun laws. The rally, organized by a dedicated group of activist parents, seeks changes in Connecticut’s gun laws in response to the Newtown massacre of 26 young children and educators.
The League of Women Voters of Connecticut has long supported measures to protect the health and safety of citizens through regulating the ownership of handguns and semi-automatic weapons. In response to the December tragedy, the LWVCT has intensified its advocacy and education efforts at the community and legislative levels. The League’s current legislative priorities include universal background checks on all gun sales, a ban on large capacity ammunition magazines, strengthening of the state assault weapons ban and of safe storage requirements.
Over the past two months, League members throughout the state have been sponsoring community forums, contacting their legislators, submitting testimony to the General Assembly Working Group on Gun Violence Prevention and urging their friends and neighbors to become involved in the effort. On its website, the LWVCT has posted “Four Things You Can Do in Light of the Newtown Gun Tragedy,” including information about how to contact legislators and ways to spearhead change at the community level.
Formed in 1920 as a “political experiment” shortly before the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was adopted, the League of Women Voters strives to encourage informed and active participation in government, increase understanding of major public policy issues and influence public policy through education and advocacy. In commenting on the significance of the League’s anniversary on the same day as the “March for Change,” LWVCT President Cheryl Dunson noted, “Our foremothers fought for the right to vote in order to have a voice in the government decisions that impacted them, their families and their communities. Ninety-three years later, we are continuing to speak out for sound public policy. At the March, we will join with men and women across the state calling for sensible changes to gun laws to reduce gun violence in our state.”
To learn more about the February 14 rally, go to www.marchforchange.org. For information about the League, visit www.lwvct.org, or call (203)288-7996.