Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn is partnering with Washington CeaseFire to launch a new program designed to help local businesses become “Gun Free Zones.” A Monday press conference to make the announcement is planned.
According to a press release, businesses will be able to opt into the program by visiting the Washington Cease Fire website, signing the pledge to participate, and placing a “Gun Free Zone” decal in their window.
“We are here to support businesses that do not wish to have guns on their premises” McGinn said in the release. “The police department regularly enforces trespass laws when a visitor to a business violates that business’s rules. We will continue to do so, and I thank these businesses for standing up for the safety of their customers.”
Dozens of businesses, including Neumos, Oddfellows, Elliott Bay Books, Cupcake Royale and Café Racer have reportedly signed up to participate.
“We’re making a statement as a community,” Washington CeaseFire Board President Ralph Fascitelli said in the press release. “We know this won’t stop someone determined to cause violence, but we hope that standing together and giving businesses a tool to say no to guns will change the conversation around gun violence. Maybe our message will even make it to Olympia – we need better tools now to stop gun violence in our community.”
Washington CeaseFire says in King County alone, more people die every year from gun violence than from motor vehicle collisions, and between 2007 and 2011, the estimated annual cost of firearms deaths and hospitalizations in King County was $177 million.