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Rob Astorino has cut mental health spending and seeks to repeal the NY SAFE Act.

In light of news reports that Rob Astorino, Republican nominee for New York Governor, cut spending on mental health, New Yorkers Against Gun Violence (NYAGV) is seeking clarification of his gun safety policy.

While Astorino has claimed better mental health systems, and not tough gun laws, will reduce gun violence, the Daily News reported yesterday that Astorino, the Westchester County Executive, has actually “slashed funding and staffing for such services since taking office in 2010,” from “just under $18 million in 2010 to about $8.4 million in the current spending plan.”

Astorino has also pledged to repeal the NY SAFE Act if he becomes Governor.

“NYAGV would like to know how, exactly, Rob Astorino would protect New Yorkers from gun violence,” said Leah Gunn Barrett, NYAGV Executive Director. “He’s against the NY SAFE Act and its provisions requiring criminal background checks to prevent felons, domestic abusers and the mentally ill from buying guns. He’s against its ban of military-style support weapons and its tougher penalties for illegal guns. And now, based on his record, he’s also against a strong mental health system.”