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Plymouth Meeting, PA, Sunday, August 4, 2019 – Arthur Steinberg, President of AFT Pennsylvania, issued the following statement on behalf of the more than 36,000 members of the Commonwealth’s statewide affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers on Sunday:
“The members of AFT Pennsylvania are heartbroken for the communities and families of El Paso and Dayton. Massacres such as these occur far too regularly in our country, and it doesn’t have to be that way.
“While we cannot simply eradicate the racism and hate—especially that stoked by our President—we need to protect our communities from these acts of domestic terrorism by passing an assault weapons ban and requiring stricter background checks. We must invest more in social services including health care and make it harder for those identified by law enforcement, health care providers, and community members as at risk for engaging in violence to obtain or use firearms.
“In order to achieve the truly safe communities other wealthy nations enjoy and that children in America deserve, politicians who control the levers of government at all levels must find the will to do what is right.
“Our thoughts are with those families affected by these massacres, the families of the two young women shot in Philadelphia last night, and with all who have been harmed by gun violence. We don’t elect political leaders to do the easy things, we elect them to do the difficult things necessary to make our lives better and the futures of our children brighter. The time is now – not tomorrow, not next week, but now – do the difficult things that will finally ensure that our families and our communities are safe.”

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