At a press conference outside the Westchester County Center in White Plains today, New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson received the endorsement of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence in his campaign for Westchester County Executive. The group, which advocates for stronger laws to protect New Yorkers against gun crimes, said Bramson understood that gun violence was a vital issue for leaders at all levels of government to address.

“Gun violence affects us all whether you live in the city or the suburbs,’’ said Leah Barrett, Executive Director of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence. “We need leaders who understand that this is just as much a local issue as a national one. Guns are just as deadly in Scarsdale as they are in Brooklyn.’’

NYAGV endorsing Noam

New Yorkers Against Gun Violence endorsing Noam Bramson

“I’m here as the voice of my 19 year-old daughter, Jessica Santos, an innocent victim shot and killed in Westchester in August 2006,” said Gisela Marin, Westchester County President of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence. “People deserve to feel safe in their homes, their workplaces, their communities – and our children certainly deserve to feel safe in their schools. This issue is about more than politics and who wins this race; it’s about saving lives.”

“In his new ad, Rob Astorino calls the issue of gun safety “nonsense” and says we should be ashamed of raising it; he couldn’t be more wrong,” said Bramson. “What kind of message does it send to the family members of gun violence victims – like the ones I stand with today – when Rob Astorino calls their advocacy “nonsense?” When Rob Astorino says his record on these issues doesn’t matter, he’s wrong. Of course this issue matters.”

“Today, we’re here to issue a simple challenge to Rob Astorino,” Bramson concluded. “Will you institute a permanent ban on gun shows at this center – not just a one time, temporary postponement? Yes or no. And if you can’t answer that simple question, then your silence will speak volumes.”