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State joins coalition to push gun industry for reform

November 14, 2018

Connecticut is joining a coalition of global investors to pressure gun manufacturers and sellers to make firearms safer.

The $35-billion Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds, which is part of the group, released a set of principles for a responsible civilian firearms industry Wednesday.

State Treasurer Denise Nappier, who administers the retirement plans, said there is a potential long-term business risk posed by high rates of mortality that are attributed to the misuse of firearms. Nappier has lobbied firearms manufacturers and distributors to make a business argument for the reasonable regulation of guns and ammunition sales.

“The proliferation of gun violence is not only a public health issue but also a business risk issue, both of which are central to our fiduciary role as long-term institutional shareholders,” Nappier said in a statement.

The group is asking the civilian firearms industry to comply with five principles that include the development of technology to make firearms safer and easier to trace, the adoption of responsible dealer standards, the establishment of complete background checks, education and training of employees at distributors, dealers and retailers and work collaboratively with the investors.

Bloomberg News reports the initial alliance of five investors came together earlier this year and expanded to include pension funds from across the country; retirement systems representing the Methodist and Roman Catholic churches; and the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, known as Calpers, the largest U.S. pension fund.

kkrasselt@hearstmediact.com; 203-842-2563; @kaitlynkrasselt

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