Kicking off the Governor’s press conference at the State House on June 8, 2021, RICAGV Executive Director Linda Finn implored House and Senate Leaders to move the Attorney General’s gun safety bills out of committee for floor votes.

Governor Dan McKee was joined by all five executive officers, Lt. Governor Sabina Matos, Attorney General Peter Neronha, Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea, and General Treasurer Seth Magaziner to speak in support of the AG’s package of gun safety bills.

Governor Dan McKee:

“Today we come together to support a package of common-sense gun safety bills… every Rhode Islanders deserves to feel safe in their community, in the communities that they call home. These measures will move us forward in that goal. We know that gun violence is an issue that requries a comprehensive response.”

Atty. Gen. Neronha Supports Gun Safety Reform Bills

Attorney General Peter Neronha:

“It is not a theoretical exercise … high capacity magazines exist on the streets of our cities … so why does it matter that someone not have access, in one clip, to that kind of firepower. Because the shooters on the streets of Providence aren’t good shooters …what they do do is put a lot of bullets out at one time. That is why the high capacity magazine bill and the assault weapon bill matter.” 

Lt. Gov. Sabina Matos supports gun safety reform bills

Lt. Governor Sabina Matos:

“Even though gun violence can sometimes make us feel hopeless we know we have the power to stop it if we all pull together as one with a shared purpose and a commitment to fighting for a better future for our communities.”

Sec. of State Nellie Gorbea supports gun safety reform bills

Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea:

“A lot of parents don’t have that priviledge … to be able to shield your children from this [gun violence]. They have to live with the violence of guns everyday, and we need to do whatever we can, as elected leaders to support common-sense gun safety laws.”

Gen. Treasurer Seth Magaziner Support Gun Safety Bills

General Treasurer Seth Magaziner:

“The unwritten rule for years has been get the gun manufacturer’s lobby on board, get their seal of approval before a bill can move. That has to end, we cannot wait for the seal of approval of the very same industry that profits off of pain and paranoia before we take action to protect Rhode Islanders. “

Powerful Messages Backed by Lived Experiences

Nwando Ofokansi
Co-Founder of Woonsocket Alliance to Champion Hope

“We knew that social and structural conditions within the city would leave youth seeking their own means of survival. We knew that young people in the city had access to firearms. We knew that there were adults illegally supplying guns to them. We may not have known exactly who the violence would involve, or when and where it would happen, but we knew. Poverty, economic decline, struggling schools, limited resources, and lax gun laws are the perfect storm for tragedy.”

Tonya King Harris
Executive Director, RI Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Women in abusive relationships are five times more likely to be murdered by their partners when that partner can access a gun. The risk to the lives of the victim’s family, friends and bystanders increases when the abuser has access to a firearm. In Rhode Island from 2006 to 2015, every bystander who was murdered during a domestic violence incident was killed with a gun.

Bill Sponsors Have Majority Support in RI House and Senate

Tonya King Harris, Executive Director of RI Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Senator Gayle Goldin
Sponsor of Assault Weapon Regulation

“Prohibiting the sale of high capacity magazines and assault weapons can save lives right here in Rhode Island, too. Data shows it, our constituents know it, and a majority of the Senate are co-sponsors of this bill because they know it, too.”

Rep. Justine Caldwell, sponsor of bills to regulate assault weapons, limit magazine capacity, and requiring safe firearm storage

Rep. Justine Caldwell
Sponsor of Assault Weapon Regulation, Limiting Magazine Capacity, and Requiring Safe Firearm Storage

Whether they will be voted on [limiting magazines and regulating assault weapons], and whether they will become law, is fully in the hands of House and Senate leadership. Our new House leadership pledged to end the practices of the past, where the will of the majority could be subverted by one well-placed member, or one well-placed lobbyist, like the ones from the NRA. It’s a new day in the House. And we have a new chance. A majority of my colleagues have, in writing, put their names on these bills as sponsors, and pledged to me to support them. There is no clearer way to demonstrate that these bills have majority support.

Special thanks to Steve Ahlquist, of, for video and photo coverage of our event. Please visit to watch videos from the press conference.