As the Iowa legislature returns to Des Moines for the start of the 2022 legislative session, lawmakers should take this opportunity to protect Iowans by rejecting dangerous legislation to strip gun safety measures. Gun violence prevention is more critical than ever, as Iowa’s weak gun laws and the pandemic have exacerbated gun violence in the state since 2020, resulting in increased gun sales, increased calls to domestic violence hotlines, and an increase in city gun violence. This year, Iowa’s few remaining gun safety laws remain under threat in the legislature and on the ballot.
Over the past year, Iowa Moms Demand Action volunteers have been fighting to end gun violence in Iowa by advocating against dangerous bills in the statehouse and engaging communities across the state. Moms Demand Action volunteers are active across Iowa, in rural and metro communities, encouraging local solutions to gun violence and standing up against attempts to gut gun safety protections. This year, Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action will be back in force to hold Iowa lawmakers accountable and urge them to reject any bill that threatens public safety.
This November, all Iowans will have the chance to reject a threat to gun safety on the ballot. A strict scrutiny ballot initiative, masking as a simple affirmation of the second amendment, will attempt to add an amendment to the Iowa constitution that could lead to the courts striking down the few public safety laws Iowa has left — like the laws protecting victims of domestic violence by keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers. Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers will be educating voters on the ballot initiative and continuing the fight against all measures that strip gun safety protections.
What to know about gun violence in Iowa:
- 59 percent of all homicides in Iowa involve a gun.
- Firearms are the 2nd leading cause of death among children and teens in Iowa. Black children and teens in Iowa are 4 times more likely than their white peers to die by guns.
- In Iowa, Black people are 13 times more likely than white people to die by gun homicide.
- Gun violence costs Iowa $1.9 billion each year, of which $44.8 million is paid by taxpayers.
Statistics about gun violence in Iowa are available here, and Everytown’s Gun Law Navigator – which shows how Iowa’s gun laws compare to those of other states – is available here. If you are interested in talking with Moms Demand Action and/or Students Demand Action volunteers in Iowa, please don’t hesitate to reach out.