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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release July 30, 2000


I am pleased that Secretary Cuomo and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) are moving forward with their successful Gun Buyback Initiative. By teaming up law enforcement, local authorities, and citizens in the fight to reduce gun violence, the HUD Gun Buyback Program has already helped remove over 17,000 guns from our communities. Today's announcement will continue to ensure the removal of thousands more guns, preventing an untold number of gun accidents, suicides and crimes. Despite HUD's clear authority to carry out this important program, the gun lobby and other opponents of common sense gun safety measures continue to challenge this initiative. We remain committed to carrying out Buyback America, and I call on HUD to continue to offer this vital assistance to communities seeking our support in addressing their local gun violence problems.

HUD's gun buybacks are an important part of my Administration's comprehensive strategy to reduce gun violence in America. While we are making progress in this fight, gun violence remains far too high. Congress can do its part by finally passing the stalled common sense gun safety legislation to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and children, and fully funding my $280 million Gun Enforcement Initiative to crack down on gun criminals. Congress should put the public safety interests of American families above those of the gun lobby and support these efforts instead of working to undermine them. If we work together, we can continue to bring down gun crime, reduce gun violence, and save lives.