Fairfield, CT – CT Against Gun Violence endorses Melissa Kane in her bid for First Selectperson of Westport, CT. Ms. Kane has long been an active and engaged local leader for gun violence prevention (GVP). She has consistently been a strong supporter of CAGV efforts to pass strong, common-sense gun laws in Connecticut and at the federal level.
Notably, Ms. Kane has initiated her own efforts to raise awareness and drive advocacy for gun sense, starting many years before her candidacy for First Selectperson when she participated in the 2001 Million Mom March in Washington, D.C. Following Newtown, she co-sponsored a sense of the meeting resolution of the Westport RTM calling for stronger gun laws, saying, “By speaking as a municipality, we give our national and state representatives the encouragement they clearly need in order to act and we lead the way for other municipalities to follow suit.” In 2016 she organized a forum about GVP with the Democratic Women of Westport.
We are confident that Melissa Kane, if elected, would be proactive in her official capacity in making Westport a model for gun sense advocacy and engagement at the local level. Municipal chief executives have an important role to play in addressing the public health crisis of gun violence, as evidenced by national programs such as Mayors Against Illegal Guns, the Brady Campaign’s Stop Bad Apple Gun Dealers mayors’ letter, and Request for Information, a program of Do Not Stand Idly By aimed at reforming gun manufacturers’ practices. Says CAGV Executive Director Ron Pinciaro, “Mayors and first selectmen are at the front lines when it comes to keeping their communities safe. With gun violence affecting urban, suburban and rural communities alike, it only makes sense for them to be actively involved in gun violence prevention efforts.”
While our endorsement goes to Melissa Kane, CAGV is pleased with the response received from her opponent, Jim Marpe. His policy views are fully supportive of the GVP agenda, and he expressed a willingness to be more engaged on the issue than he has in the past. His recent actions are a promising sign of commitment to the issue: joining the coalition of Mayors Against Illegal Guns and adding his name to the Request for Information.
Our endorsement of Melissa Kane in the Westport First Selectperson race is the first time CT Against Gun Violence has endorsed candidates in local elections. Jonathan Perloe, Director of Communications for CAGV, stated, “Endorsing mayoral candidates is good for the GVP movement; it raises awareness among both the candidates and voters that there are actions at the local level that can contribute to preventing gun violence.”