We must do better as a country in addressing gun violence and mass shootings. Sitting around and hoping things will change is never a solution. In Michigan, there are many common sense steps we can take that will make an immediate difference and save lives. As a responsible gun owner, I understand acutely that change is needed. Here are some steps that we should take to prevent future tragedies:

1. Requiring Background Checks on All Gun Sales: Federal law only requires licensed gun dealers to conduct background checks on gun sales. Background checks should be required for all gun sales, including gun show sales and online sales;

2. Red Flag Laws: These laws allow law enforcement and family members to ask a judge to temporarily restrict a person’s access to firearms when the individual is in crisis. These laws are proven to reduce suicide, prevent tragedies, and combat mass shootings;

3. Promoting Secure Gun Storage: Over 5 million children live in homes with firearms that are unlocked and loaded. Passing secure gun storage laws and building public awareness/understanding of gun safety/storage will help prevent tragedies, suicide, and unintentional shootings; and

4. Funding Violence Intervention Programs: Violence intervention programs address gun violence with a localized approach. However, these programs are often underfunded even though they are proven to be effective tools in combating gun violence.