Gov. Dannel P. Malloy added his name Monday to a list of public and religious leaders demanding information on what gun manufacturers are doing to keep guns out of the hands of criminals.
The request for information asks what policies gun makers have in place regarding selling weapons to retailers who who have sold guns used to commit crimes, and whether they are willing to buy back unsold weapons. The group is also seeking information on what manufacturers are doing to develop “smart gun technology,” or weapons that won’t fire unless they’re in the hands of their owners.
In making the request, Malloy joins several religious organizations and municipal leaders, including Newtown First Selectman Patricia Llodra, Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch, Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling, and Fairfield First Selectman Mike Tetreau.
Public entities like police departments make up a large share of firearm purchases. The hope is to use market pressure to promote responsible practices within the gun industry, according to a press release from Malloy’s office.
“For a generation, we’ve been hearing that it’s not guns that kill people, it’s people that kill people,” Malloy said. “If that’s the case, then the gun industry has an obligation to tell us what they’re doing to keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them.”
In a statement, the National Shooting Sports Foundation listed several programs it operates to promote gun safety and to discourage illegal straw purchasing of guns.
But the group, which is a firearm industry trade organization, questioned why the governor did not reach out to the state’s gun manufacturers directly and chose instead to pose the questions in a press release in advance of a roundtable discussion scheduled for Monday evening in Milford.
“We rather suspect that the Governor sees a political advantage in publicly sparring with the firearms industry, rather than really bringing us into a conversation,” the NSSF statement reads.
The group said it formally requested a meeting with Emergency Services and Public Protection Commission Dora Schriro in April, but the agency did not respond. Although gun manufacturers were looking to discuss the rollout of the state’s new firearm regulations, the group said public safety policies could also have been discussed.