International

Encouraging companies to end their role in gun violence

October 2, 2021

gun with red circle and line over it 

Every day, more than 100 people in the United States are killed with guns. In support of the Sisters of Mercy’s Critical Concern for nonviolence, Mercy Investment Services currently engages several companies for their role in the prevalence of gun violence. 

Untraceable firearms are a growing problem. “Ghost guns” are fully functional firearms made at home using parts and kits purchased from gun dealers or online with no required background check. The assembled guns lack a serial number or identifying information, making them untraceable when used in a crime. Through the Interfaith center on Corporate Responsibility’s gun safety group, Mercy Investment Services engages multiple companies including FedEx and UPS related to the shipping of and Mastercard and Visa regarding facilitating payment of these untraceable firearms. 

Mercy’s work on gun violence extends beyond ghost guns. In September, almost 44 percent of shareholders at gun manufacturer Smith and Wesson voted in favor of a resolution calling for a human rights policy, noting the risks throughout the company’s operations and supply chain. Mercy is also addressing gun violence risks such as policing behaviors in the stores and the lack of funding for violence intervention programs at Dollar General and Dollar Tree stores. 

Several of these companies responded to shareholder concerns and have engaged in dialogues. Mercy Investment Services will continue to address the Critical Concern of nonviolence as we work with these companies and others on their role in the gun violence epidemic.