Smith & Wesson was wounded in a showdown with nuns and shareholders over gun safety this week, but its CEO didn’t appear to be surrendering.
Investors led by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility won a resolution on gun safety at the American Outdoor Brand's annual shareholder meeting on Tuesday, calling for Smith & Wesson’s parent company to report what measures it has taken to make its guns and products safer, The New York Post reported.
The proposal, backed by 11 shareholder groups, was introduced at the meeting by Sister Judy Byron, who was representing the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary in Ontario.
She argued that the initiative was essential in ensuring the company’s survival in wake of recent mass shootings in the U.S., which have involved American Outdoor Brands products.
This left the company and its shareholders vulnerable to boycotts and negative publicity, she said according to CNBC News.
“Each event brings new threats of lawsuits, boycotts, divestment and demonstrations — and along with them, a wave of damaging news stories about gun companies and their inability to make their products safer for civilians,” she said, according to the Post.
Byron noted it was American Outdoor Brands obligation to help find these solutions.
The company did not take questions during the meeting but CEO James Debney afterwards dismissed the resolution and said the vote was “politically motivated.”
He didn’t commit to producing the report outlined in the resolution and said it was disappointing that shareholders did not take the case to the state legislature and instead took it to the annual meeting.
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