McGinn and Washington CeaseFire’s Ralph Fascitelli Celebrate Gun Free Zone Program

This morning at - shockingly enough - a press conference, Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn announced that over 100 local businesses have signed up to be part of the city’s Gun Free Zone program. Joined by Washington CeaseFire President Ralph Fascitelli, the celebratory presser took place at the Big Picture Theatre, with the mayor touting the program’s growth as proof that the local business community is “standing up together for what they believe in.”

The Gun Free Zone program, which McGinn unveiled in August, asks local businesses to ban gun-toters from their establishment. Businesses that sign up receive a “Gun Free Zone” decal. As Brian Rosenthal of the Seattle Times reported at the time of the program’s unveiling, “The program is based on laws allowing businesses to set conditions of entry such as requiring shirts and shoes. In Washington, local governments are prohibited from directly setting their own gun laws.”

At this morning’s press conference, Fascitelli indicated that Seattle’s Gun Free Zone program has attracted national attention. “This program has become a national model for how to change the conversation on gun violence,” Fascitelli says in a press released distributed by the mayor’s office. “We’ve gotten calls from cities, counties and even other states asking for advice on how to implement their own Gun Free Zone programs. With Mayor McGinn’s support, this creative initiative is gaining national momentum and attention.”

“This really shows the strength of our local business community here in Seattle,” McGinn says in the same release. “They are standing up together for what they believe in. Thank you to these businesses for partnering with Washington CeaseFire to change the culture of gun violence in our city.”

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