New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order on Tuesday, declaring a “first-in-the-nation” disaster emergency on gun violence, and outlining several steps the state will be taking to quell the bloodshed, particularly that which affects at-risk youth.
Speaking to an audience at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City, the Democratic governor also signed legislation that closed “a loophole that allowed people with outstanding warrants for their arrest to purchase guns,” according to a Tuesday press release.
Cuomo began his press conference touting New York’s response to the novel coronavirus pandemic. He said 51 people had died over the Fourth of July weekend, while only 13 had suffered COVID-19-related deaths.
“We went from one epidemic to another epidemic. We went from COVID to the epidemic of gun violence. And the fear and the death that goes along with it,” Cuomo said. “When you look at the recent numbers, more people are dying of gun violence than of COVID … we’re losing young people.”