Rep. Kirkland appointed co-chair of PA SAFE Caucus

HARRISBURG, Feb. 14 – State Rep. Brian Kirkland, D-Delaware, was recently appointed co-chair of the bipartisan, bicameral PA SAFE Caucus, a group of legislators who believe in reducing all types of violence.

Kirkland, who represents the 159th Legislative District that includes the city of Chester, joins Rep. Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, and Sen. Steve Santarsiero, D-Bucks, as co-chairs.

“I am truly honored by this appointment, and I look forward to working with this outstanding group of legislators as we continue to push for a reduction in gun violence and all types of violence in the commonwealth,” Kirkland said. “I extend my appreciation to Representative Frankel, Senator Santarsiero and the entire PA SAFE Caucus for entrusting me with this responsibility. We have a lot of hard work ahead of us, but it’s worth it if we can ultimately save lives and make Pennsylvania safer.”

Kirkland was also appointed to Gov. Tom Wolf’s Special Council on Gun Violence in December. And, last month, he was appointed co-chair of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus’ anti-gun violence subcommittee.

“Given Republican leadership’s commitment to inaction, we must get creative to cut gun violence at its roots,” Frankel said. “Through his work both in Harrisburg and his district, Representative Kirkland has exhibited the leadership needed to fight the scourge of gun violence.”

Among Kirkland’s committee assignments with the Pennsylvania House of Representatives are Children & Youth and Urban Affairs. He also serves as a deacon at Community Baptist Church in Chester, where he runs a youth mentoring program.

Frankel and then-state Rep. Madeleine Dean established the PA SAFE Caucus after the December 2012 Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. The caucus introduces and supports anti-gun violence measures, as well as engages with fellow legislators and stakeholders to study and promote anti-gun violence initiatives.

At current count, there are 29 gun safety bills from the 2019-20 term awaiting committee action. That includes Kirkland’s H.B. 738, which would require an individual to present photographic identification when purchasing firearm ammunition.