Jun 9, 2022 - Economy

Exclusive: CEOs call on Senate to pass gun legislation

Illustration of a suited person's hand pointing a finger gun with a one hundred dollar bill dropping from their finger

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

CEOs of more than 220 U.S. companies on Thursday will release a letter calling on the Senate to "take immediate action" to reduce gun violence, Axios has learned exclusively.

Why it matters: This is the latest example of corporate America delving into a hot-button issue where solutions often break down along partisan lines.

  • The companies employ workers in all 50 states, and include Levi Strauss & Co., Dick's Sporting Goods, Lululemon, Lyft, Bain Capital, Bloomberg LP, Permanente Medical Group and Unilever U.S.
  • Also on the list are pro sports teams like the Philadelphia Eagles and San Francisco Giants.
  • This is a revised version of a letter first sent in 2019, with around 50% more initial signatories, and was organized by Levi Strauss & Co. and gun control advocacy group Everytown in the aftermath of 16 mass shootings that were bookended by Buffalo and Uvalde.

What they're saying: The letter calls gun violence a "public health crisis" that devastates communities, and then highlights the economic impact:

"Gun violence costs American taxpayers, employers and communities a staggering $280 billion per year. Employers lose $1.4 million every day in productivity and revenue, and costs associated with victims of gun violence. Communities that experience gun violence struggle to attract investment, create jobs, and see economic growth."

What they're not saying: The letter doesn't endorse any specific policy proposals, or make any new ones, perhaps illustrating how difficult it is to get broad agreement on anything beyond "do something."

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