WARWICK, RI – Less than two weeks after a tragic mass shooting in Florida that killed 17 students and teachers, Governor Gina M. Raimondo became the first governor in America to take executive action to establish a statewide ‘red flag’ policy to keep guns out of the hands of individuals who pose a danger to themselves and others. Rhode Island State Police Superintendent Col. Ann Assumpico, local police chiefs, members of the General Assembly, community leaders, parents and students joined Governor Raimondo as she signed the Rhode Island Red Flag Executive Order at Warwick City Hall.

Here’s what local leaders and advocates are saying:

Pawtucket Mayor Donald Grebien:
“I applaud Governor Raimondo, the General Assembly Leadership, and the Police Chiefs Association for taking proactive steps to save lives and protect our communities. Time after time we have seen tragedies occur that could have been prevented if the police or a family member could have acted on warning signs. Implementing this type of process will be helpful to our community and municipalities across the state.”

Central Falls Police Chief Colonel James Mendonca, President of the RI Police Chiefs’ Association:
“I applaud the governor’s leadership on this initiative. We should all be in support of comprehensive legislation intended to prevent people from getting their hands on a firearm who are a danger to themselves and who are a danger to others.”

Cranston Police Chief Colonel Michael Winquist:
“The signing of today’s executive order provides law enforcement with a valuable tool in preventing individuals who clearly exhibit a danger to the public from possessing and acquiring firearms, while balancing the constitutional right to bear arms. I want to thank Governor Raimondo for taking swift action on signing this protective measure, as well the other legislators including Speaker Mattiello who have vowed their support to make this measure permanent.”

Providence Police Chief Colonel Hugh Clements:
“This action is absolutely essential to give police greater power to voluntarily commit those individuals who raise ‘red flags’. It is critical to have the proper authority where circumstances clearly indicate there is a grave public safety risk at hand. It will allow the Criminal Justice system to take a deep look into the circumstances and potential danger along with providing the proper resources to the troubled individual.”