TN Capitol Hill roundtable Tuesday aims at gun violence

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A gun safety group and a democrat state lawmaker hope to raise awareness Tuesday at the state capitol about what they call an epidemic of gun violence in Tennessee.

“We are 11th for firearm mortality and 7th for firearm homicide,” says Beth Joslin Roth who runs the Safe Tennessee Project.

She, along with Nashville lawmaker Rep. John Ray Clemmons will host the roundtable scheduled for Tuesday morning in the 2nd Senate library from 10 A.M. until noon.

Roth is also the author of a report called “Tennessee Gun Violence: An issue of public health and public safety.”

The 70-page report draws on data from sources like the FBI, local police departments statewide and the Tennessee Health Department.

“I feel largely what we are trying to do is raise awareness of the scope of the problem,” Roth said Monday.

She cited two areas that state lawmakers could change in the aftermath of the weekend mass shootings last month in Dayton and El Paso.

“Expanding background checks or the red flag law–which we refer to those as ‘extreme risk protection order,’ I think would be the two things that really could make the biggest difference,” added Roth.

Governor Lee earlier this month outlined the difficulty of balancing safety with protecting 2nd Amendment rights.

“Looking at what provides public safety in the greatest way at the same time maintaining the protection of rights of our citizens. that is the approach we’ll take,” said the governor while saying he does not know what bills may be proposed by lawmakers

Roth says another goal of her report is to get it in the hands of every lawmaker including the governor.

The roundtable tomorrow in the capitol hill library includes doctors, a professor and a member of a national group to stop gun violence.  

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