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Amnesty International USA today made an announcement calling for Congress to cut short its August recess and call an emergency session to immediately address gun violence in the United States. Ernest Coverson, End Gun Violence campaign manager at Amnesty International USA said: 

“We can no longer accept the dangerous reality in which we live. The House has passed several measures that would help reduce gun violence, but the Senate has yet to bring them up for discussion even though lives are at stake.” 

“Gun violence in the U.S. is a human rights crisis. This is an emergency. It will continue to be an emergency until our lawmakers treat it as such.”

Amnesty International USA is calling on Congress to return to Washington and vote on legislation combating this crisis, starting with requiring background checks for the sale of every gun. Reforms should also include a ban on civilian possession of semi-automatic assault rifles and shotguns, large capacity magazines, and other dangerous devices; weapons-grade assault rifles; prohibiting firearm possession by individuals convicted of misdemeanor hate crimes; safe storage legislation; and funding for research that can inform evidence and research-based policy solutions to address gun violence.

Background 

A report by Amnesty International, “In the Line of Fire: Human Rights and the U.S. Gun Violence Crisis” examined how all aspects of American life have been compromised in some way by the unfettered access to guns, with no attempts at meaningful national regulation.

Last month, Amnesty International published a report examining whether the US has met its obligation under human rights law to provide effective remedies to survivors of gun violence.

This week, Amnesty International issued a travel advisory for the United States due to rampant gun violence.