Mayor Durkan Leads More Than 30 U.S. Mayors in Calling on 3D Printer Manufacturers to Stop Their Products from Being Used to Create Homemade Guns

Seattle (September 26) – Joined by more than 30 mayors from across the country, Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan led a letter calling on the leading 3D printer manufacturers to help prevent their products from being used to create homemade, unregulated, and untraceable guns with downloadable blueprints.

In June, the Trump administration reached a settlement agreement that will allow downloadable guns for unlimited public distribution in any form. Mayor Durkan stood with Washington State Attorney General in support of the multi-state lawsuit he is leading to block the administration’s action.

“The capability for 3D printers to produce homemade ‘ghost guns’ poses a threat to public safety in all our communities, and we urge you to take action to prevent your technology from being used for this purpose,” wrote more than 30 mayors from across the country. “Now is the time to ensure the best impacts for our communities. We urge you to work together to develop a technology-based solution to prevent 3D printers from producing firearms.”

Mayor Durkan is taking urgent action to make Seattle safer from gun violence. Earlier this year, she signed into law her legislation requiring the responsible storage of guns and increasing civil penalties and legal responsibility for failing to report unsecured guns that are lost, stolen, or improperly used by an unauthorized user.

 

Dear Mr. Jaglom, Mr. Joshi, Mr. Rockwell, Mr. Weisler, and Ms. Holt:  

As mayors representing communities across the country, we write with grave concern about the recent news that blueprints for making fully functional guns using 3-D printers could be promulgated widely on the internet. The capability for 3-D printers to produce homemade “ghost guns” poses a threat to public safety in all our communities, and we urge you to take action to prevent your technology from being used for this purpose.

As mayors, we grapple with the impact of gun violence in our communities every day. Across this country, in large cities and small towns, 96 Americans are killed with guns every day, and hundreds more are shot and injured. One of the biggest challenges to our efforts to reduce gun violence and save lives is the ease with which individuals who seek to do harm can obtain these deadly weapons. Each of us work with our law enforcement leadership to combat illegal gun trafficking, straw purchasing and the use of highly dangerous weapons of war in our streets. The availability of 3-D printer technology to create homemade firearms will only compound these challenges.

3-D printed guns pose two primary risks to public safety. First, these guns are untraceable, essentially phantom guns. They are manufactured without any oversight or regulation, so there is no documentation of these weapons. They have no serial number to track if and when they are recovered from a crime scene. Neither the producers nor the users of these homemade weapons undergo any background checks, making it possible for individuals barred from legally possessing a firearm to skirt the law and make one themselves. Second, 3-D printed guns can be undetectable. Their plastic composition makes it possible for a functional firearm to bypass metal detectors, which are commonly used to protect weapons being smuggled into sensitive locations such as schools, airports, courthouses and government buildings. In Israel, a reporter successfully brought a 3-D printed gun into the Parliament, illustrating how easily a fully functional plastic firearm can bypass security screenings. The fact that 3-D printed guns can circumvent standard security screens is alarming to both civilians and security professionals, making finding a solution to this public safety challenge an imperative.

You are leaders of companies at the forefront of 3-D printing technology. You have smart, innovative employees creating the next generation of so many things needed by society; from cars to homes, 3-D technology will have profound impacts. Now is the time to ensure the best impacts for our communities.

We urge you to work together to develop a technology-based solution to prevent 3-D printers from producing firearms. Major 3D printing company Sculpteo has banned firearm printing, saying it doesn’t want to be associated with weapon manufacturing. And we were heartened to see Materialise, a publicly traded 3D printing manufacturer and software developer, has launched a feature to block the production of guns.

This is certainly an unintended use of your technology and, as leaders of this industry, you have the ability and the responsibility to work to devise an innovative solution to address this real threat. Your technology has been integral to the advancement of the engineering, manufacturing and medical industries by accelerating innovation to improve lives. Please do not allow it to be weaponized to create untraceable, undetectable firearms.

Sincerely,

Mayor Jenny A. Durkan

Seattle, Washington

 

Mayor Catherine Pugh

Baltimore, Maryland

Mayor Jonathan Rothschild

Tucson, Arizona

 

Mayor Darrell Steinberg

Sacramento, California

Mayor Jim Kenney

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

 

Mayor Bill Peduto

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Mayor Sam Liccardo

San Jose, California

 

Mayor Buddy Dyer

Orlando, Florida

Mayor Nan Whaley

Dayton, Ohio

Mayor Levar Stoney

Richmond, Virginia

 

Mayor Daniel Horrigan

Akron, Ohio

 

Mayor Rahm Emanuel

Chicago, Illinois

Mayor Cassie Franklin

Everett, Washington

Mayor Pete Buttigieg

South Bend, Indiana

 

Mayor Melvin Carter

St. Paul, Minnesota

Mayor Eric Garcetti

Los Angeles, California

 

Mayor Miguel Pulido

Santa Ana, California

 

Mayor Greg Fischer

Louisville, Kentucky

 

Mayor Andrew J. Ginther

Columbus, Ohio

 

Mayor Steve Adler

Austin, Texas

 

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms

Atlanta, Georgia

 

Mayor Jacob Frey

Minneapolis, MN

 

Mayor LaToya Cantrell

New Orleans, Louisiana

 

Mayor Tom Barrett

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

 

Mayor Michael Tubbs

Stockton, California

 

Mayor Sharon Weston Broome

Baton Rouge, Louisiana

 

Mayor Randal Woodfin

Birmingham, Alabama

 

Mayor Ted Wheeler

Portland, Oregon

 

Mayor Martin J. Walsh

Boston, Massachusetts

 

Mayor London N. Breed

San Francisco, California

 

Mayor Muriel Bowser

Washington, D.C.

 

 

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