Colorado Ceasefire began in the 2000 election cycle. After the Colorado General Assembly failed to pass significant gun violence prevention laws following the Columbine High School shooting, a small group of committed individuals formed a PAC (political action committee) to remove from office legislators who were a block to progress. That year six critical races turned hands, and we felt that we had made a significant contribution to those changes. We then realized “We have a voice at the capitol; we can’t stop now!” …..and so an organization was born.
Colorado Ceasefire began as an all-volunteer organization and it continues to be so. It is now comprised of 3 branches:
Colorado Ceasefire Legislative Action – for lobbying
Ceasefire contracts with a lobbyist at the Colorado capitol for legislative advice, direct contact and advocacy with legislators and the governor. Other than our professional lobbyist, Ceasefire engages in educating our membership about bills, generating calls and letters to legislators and providing testimony.
Four days after the 2012 Aurora massacre, Ceasefire gathered a number of long-time leaders in the gun violence movement to discuss possible legislative actions. A substantial list of potential laws was drawn up. This list became the starting point for stakeholders meetings, which were convened by our lobbyist.
Stakeholders included chiefs of police, sheriffs, advocates on domestic violence, gun violence and mental health, several legislators and staff. CBI provided advice. The stakeholders met monthly for four months to hammer out an agreed upon plank of bills. Representatives met with Governor Hickenlooper in November. The final meeting in December was on the afternoon of the Sandy Hook shooting. The results of those efforts were the bills signed into law in 2013:
Universal Background Checks
Ban on High Capacity Magazines
Domestic Violence Surrender of Firearms
Also enacted were laws to require gun buyers to pay for background checks, and a requirement that CCW training classes be in person.
We continue to work to preserve those gains. Although our primary focus is the Colorado General Assembly, from time to time we assist in federal grassroots lobbying efforts.
Colorado Ceasefire Outreach – for education
The newest member of the Ceasefire family, Colorado Ceasefire Outreach was formed in December 2015 and is dedicated to providing education-related activities on preventing gun violence. As the organization is still in its infancy, the specific direction of this organization is still in the formative stages.
Colorado Ceasefire PAC – for electioneering efforts
The PAC evaluates candidates for Colorado legislative office and makes endorsements, which are shared with our members. It also contributes financially to candidates, encourages members to volunteer for selected candidates, and will run independent expenditure mailers or advertisements.
The PAC may make endorsements in federal campaigns and inform Ceasefire’s membership of those endorsements. Leaders and members may choose to volunteer for those campaigns, but Ceasefire makes no monetary contribution or expenditure on federal campaigns.
P.O. Box 7501
Denver, CO 80207
Follow us on Twitter at @COCeasefire
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