The Berkshire Eagle   reports North Adams Mayor Thomas Bernard and Pittsfield Mayor Linda Tyer have expressed their commitment to principles endorsed by a collection of hundreds of mayors across the country in the wake of last weekend's massacres in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.

The two attacks left a combined 31 dead and more than 50 wounded, leaving the nation reeling anew from news of mass shootings.

In a joint statement, the mayors of the Berkshires' two cities announced their support for the Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition.

Bernard expressed frustration with the pattern that has formed after a mass shooting unfolds.

Tyer said in the release. "However, as leaders we have an obligation to our residents and our communities to be part of this ongoing and growing national movement to support commonsense strategies and laws that make it more difficult for those intent on pursing a course of violence to act on their deadliest impulses."

The coalition is a nationwide, bipartisan group of more than 1,000 mayors, organized by the Everytown for Gun Safety advocacy movement, whose mission is to "respect the Second Amendment by doing much more than keeping guns out of the hands of dangerous people," according to its website.

In addition to endorsing the coalition's pledge, Tyer and Bernard pointed to actions in their cities aimed at responding to and reducing threats of gun violence, including: building stronger relationships at the neighborhood and school levels through focused and intentional community policing programs, including participation in the annual National Night Out; deepening partnerships among police departments and community agencies such as the Elizabeth Freeman Center and the NAACP Berkshire County branch; expanding the use of data to inform decision-making and enforcement initiatives and joining Berkshire District Attorney Andrea Harrington's Domestic and Sexual Violence Task Force.



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