Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG)

Mayor Helene Schneider, a member of MAIG, forwarded this announcement, parts of which have been excerpted below. 

When we started Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG) in 2006, we knew that building a movement of like-minded mayors and citizens wouldn’t happen overnight. The gun lobby had a multi-decade head start, and we understood that creating a strong coalition that could compete with their resources would require time, money, and grassroots engagement.

In order to loosen the gun lobby’s hold in Washington, we need the kind of widespread grassroots support that has the power to change the national attitude on gun policy. We need to embolden Americans throughout the nation to call for the stronger public safety laws that we need to make real progress on the federal level. That’s why we recently merged our efforts with the grassroots organ ization, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.

Since MAIG and Moms merged, we’ve seen a groundswell in grassroots support and increases in both media coverage and legislative victories. As mayors, you’ve always been at the heart of our organizational mission and our recent growth owes much to your tireless and courageous work. The efforts of MAIG and the passion of Moms have truly changed the game when it comes to how Americans think about guns. In effect, our partnership has resulted in the emergence of an incredibly powerful organization dedicated to fighting for better policies that prevent gun violence.

To mark that success and acknowledge the reality of our growth, we are announcing a new name for our overarching organization that will house the two groups: Everytown for Gun Safety. The new name represents an important truth about gun violence in America: “Gun violence takes the lives of 86 Americans every day. These deaths are not isolated in cities. They are not the result of ‘only’ mass shootings. They can, and do, happen in every town.” Mayors Michael Bloomberg and Thomas Menino 

Toni Wellen is the chair of the Santa Barbara Coalition Against Gun Violence. She lives in Carpinteria.