HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. — Since 2013, Highland Park has its own assault weapons ban — but city leaders say its ineffective without something similar at the state and federal level.
On Monday night, the city council unanimously passed a resolution to call for state and federal lawmakers to act.
The resolution calls to ban the manufacture, purchase, sale, possession, and use of all semi-automatic weapons, high-capacity ammunition cartridges and magazines, and body armor — except as needed by the military and law enforcement.
“We know that a single city, county or state cannot protect its residents from this violence,” Mayor Nancy Rotering said. “They’re not islands and we are only as safe as what is permitted by the gun laws nearby.”
It would also call on state lawmakers and Congress to strengthen background checks, red flag laws and safe storage requirements.
Advocates who’ve been working around the clock since the shooting to pass gun reforms call the vote an important step.
“I really do have chills everywhere just hearing the vote and feeling the support,” Jen Hulsh said.
Jen Hulsh is sending two children to preschool soon and just bought them bulletproof backpacks.
“I felt like I had no other choice because I don’t know how else to protect them,” she said.
She and other activists believe an assault weapons ban would help – but even though the U.S. House passed its version last month, it remains an uphill battle in Congress.
State representatives are expected back in Springfield in November. In the meantime, working groups there are brainstorming ideas. Gov. JB Pritzker expressed optimism on Friday.
“We want to make sure that everyone is coming together so we can put forward the best legislation possible,” Pritzker said.
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