Those looking to do business with Chicago may need a 'Safe Guns' policy

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and City Council Chairman Edward Burke proposed an ordinance Wednesday to modify Chicago’s policy to require financial institutions working with the city to file a “Safe Guns Policy” affidavit.

The affidavit would force a lender to vouch that their other business customers adhere to a list of firearm regulations such as prohibiting the sale of “high-capacity magazines” or barring gun sales to those under 21.

“When it comes to fighting for stronger, smarter gun laws Chicago is putting our money where our mouth is,” Emanuel said in a statement. “The private sector has a role to play in supporting public safety. Chicago should give our business to companies who share our values and want to be part of the solution to gun violence, not profit from it.”

To satisfy the Safe Guns Policy, financial institutions looking to work with Chicago on issues such as underwriting municipal bonds, or providing banking services would have to attest that their other clients do not sell bump stocks and high-capacity magazines, or sell firearms to those under the age of 21 or to those who do not pass a background check.

City leaders pointed to a recent decision by Citibank to cut ties with partnering businesses unwilling to adopt new policies for selling firearms, which mirror those proposed in Chicago’s guidelines.

“If Citigroup can adopt this policy, then all banks that wish to business with the City of Chicago should follow suit,” Burke said.

The move comes as the state’s largest city has been putting pressure on Illinois lawmakers to ramp up gun restrictions statewide. On Tuesday, Chicago aldermen advanced citywide bans on bump stock devices and the civilian use of body armor.

Earlier this month, Emanuel publicly praised sporting goods retailer Dick’s for their move to restrict some sales of guns and ammunition, saying the chain “supports our values for common sense gun legislation.”

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