April Meeting Minutes

Action Ridge –  April 12, 2018

Jan Starzec – Moms Demand Action (Park Ridge group)

Charity Haines – Membership Lead (Park Ridge MDA)

Not just for Moms! And not just Park Ridge residents can come to the group. MDA is not political; all are welcome to join.

Sara Knizhnik – Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence, local group lead for MDA N. Suburbs

One thing to remember – We are winning, we are going to change the cultural around guns in this country.

Do not want to repeal 2nd amendment, no problem with gun ownership. Want common sense laws. Cultural change requires behavior/cultural changes, plus legislative changes.

Federal Level

ATF – deliberately underfunded. Mandate is to visit every gun dealer every year; only visit every 8 years.

NRA = Donald Trump

Concealed Carry Reciprocity – Concealed Carry required to be legal in all states, but each state has its own regulations. Illinois has strong regulations; some states have none. CCR means you can take a gun from any state to any state. Brings all gun laws down to lowest common denominator. Passed House, must not pass Senate. Trump will sign it into law if it passes. Action: Call Federal Senators, ask them to vote no on Concealed Carry Reciprocity.  Expect it to be voted on in the Senate before mid-term elections. Senators Durbin and Duckworth will vote no, but we should still call them to voice our opinions.

NRA – Vast majority (70%) of members are in favor of common sense gun legislation. The leadership of the NRA are the ones who are representing the gun manufacturers.

Dickey amendment – states that the CDC cannot fund firearms research.

 State Level

Gun Dealer Licensing Act – Ensure gun dealers in Illinois follow safe practices and do not sell illegal guns. Immediate impact on gun violence. 60% of guns used in Illinois crime are purchased out of state.  Would require background checks, video surveillance to reduce gun theft. Big Box stores exempted from licensing. Sen. Rooney voted for the bill because he heard from so many constituents that they wanted it; he did not like the bill or intend to vote for it.  This shows that contacting our legislators does work.

Need a state law since federal laws are not adequately enforced.

Petitions to Illinois lawmakers for overturning veto of Gun Dealer Licensing Act are necessary. Blank copies available. Get signed and return to Sara.

Contact reps about the following (Sara provided handouts)

Raise minimum age for assault weapon from 18 to 21. HB1465

Ban bump stocks. HB1467

Increase waiting period from 24 hours to 72 hours to purchase assault weapon. HB1468

Senators (and Rep) to contact:

Sen. Bertino-Tarrant

Sen. Connelly

Sen. T. Cullerton

Sen. Curran

Sen. Holmes

Sen. Manar

Sen. Stadelman

Rep. McAuliffe

+ Your senator

Students Demand Action (part of MDA)

Started after Parkland. For high school and college students. Can contact Sara or Jan to get engaged.

Moms Demand Action (Jan Starzec)

Handouts available.

Meeting Tuesday, April 24 at United Methodist Church.

Purpose is to grow number of supporters of gun violence prevention so can mobilize as needed.

No membership fee.


  1. Universal Background Checks
  2. Promote Gun Safety: Be SMART
  3. Reasonable Limits on Guns in Public Places
  4. Stop Gun Trafficking & Fraudulent Purchasing

ERA (Nan)

13 Action Ridge members met with Michael McAuliffe. Sending letters and postcards to let him know his constituents are in favor of passing the ERA.

Update from Ellen Upton – He was interested, took copious notes, asked for additional information, responded to email. Spoke about legal implications. Illinois has an ERA, interpreted under strict scrutiny law. Strong states rights, but the reason we need a federal law is it’s limited to Illinois, very specific situations. He was very concerned about Illinois being one of only 5 states (Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Utah, Virginia) who have an ERA, but have not ratified the federal law. Call Rep. McAuliffe 773.444.0611 – if he is your rep, let him know. Springfield: 217.782.8182. Cook County Election Board – to find out who your reps are, and can email from there. He is up for reelection and needs to hear from his constituents.

Illinois Senate passed the ERA yesterday (4/11).

Legalizing Equality party – showed 30 minute video. Lisa Kiahara from Ratify Illinois attended. Nan Parson has a copy of the dvd if anyone would like to borrow it. Showing of the full movie April 20, 7PM at the Methodist Church.

Phone banking will be set up by Lou Lang’s office in the next couple weeks. Eden will let us know next week when this will happen. Sign up with Nan if you’re interested.

Myths about the ERA document available.

Some members attended Equal Pay Day rally. Organizing group is supporting the Salary History bill. HB4162 prevents employers from requiring salary history so they don’t limit salary of new hires based on previous earnings.

Will focus on going to Springfield when the ERA vote is scheduled. May rent a bus and let everyone know.

Outreach committee – Weekly conference calls, reporting in on Action Ridge activities with Rep. McAuliffe.

Interest Groups

How to engage members in different interest groups? How can Action Ridge be most effective? Current focus: Gun Control/Common Sense Gun Laws. Continue to engage in ERA activities. Discuss as people’s rights, not women’s rights. Don’t want to plan too far in advance because things change so quickly.

Contact churches/high schools to engage in gun control?

Need to identify those who want to focus on gun control.

Sister Districts

If interested in making calls, let Nan know and she can connect people with that organization.  The email for Sister Districts—sandrasuldun@gmail.com.

Tammy Duckworth

Cannot bring baby onto Senate floor. Cannot vote if on maternity leave. Trying to change Senate rules to allow Senators to vote and sponsor legislation in absentia and to bring children on the floor.  To sign the petition go to:  https://act.weareultraviolet.org/sign/duckworth_maternity/

Memorial Day Parade

Action Ridge will be marching. Karen Banks-Lubicz unveiled our banner. No flyers allowed. Nan to check with Kate Kerin to follow up on whether we can hand out anything.

How to let others in Park Ridge know about Action Ridge? Flyers to distribute door to door? Park Ridge Virtual Chatter. Ula Sivertsen, Ellen Upton, Judy Johnson (judyjohnson60068@gmail.com), Debbie Maggio, Alice Dobrinski, Beth Brosnan, Faye to check if library will publish our meetings/events.

Minutes of the Core Leaders’ Group:  Important decision was made that Rachel Georgakis will lead a group to focus on the Gun Control Issue—meet with Sara Krizhnik to coordinate efforts—ask her to come to our next meeting on May 1Oth.

BTW, $208 was collected to pay for banner, signs, posters, and cards—to get out the AR word.  MARCH ON!

Submitted by Arlene Levin and Faye O’Leary

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