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Amalgamated Bank Demands Change at Sturm Ruger
April 19, 2018

Amalgamated Bank Demands Change at Sturm Ruger

  • Amalgamated Bank Calls on US Gun Manufacturer Strum Ruger (NYSE:RGR) to Implement Common Sense Reforms for Improved Shareholder Value

  • Demands substantive action from the gun manufacturer to demonstrate corporate responsibility

  • Calls on Sturm Ruger to adopt six operational and policy reforms recommended by Everytown for Gun Safety

  • Warns Amalgamated may withhold support in re-election of RGR Director Sandra Froman, NRA board member

Across the country, there is growing consensus that more must be done to promote safe and responsible gun measures.  ...we are urging Sturm Ruger to demonstrate its independence from the NRA, and show Board stewardship and commitment to responsible corporate and social behavior...

Keith Mestrich, President and CEO of Amalgamated Bank

NEW YORK – Amalgamated Bank, America’s socially responsible bank, today called on publicly traded gun manufacturer Sturm Ruger to demonstrate a commitment to corporate governance, responsible business practices, and risk management.

The shareholder letter, sent to Sturm Ruger’s Board of Directors today, outlines numerous concerns regarding the manufacturer’s’ performance and risk management. The letter questions whether the company’s close relationship to the National Rifle Association (NRA), through marketing payments and board interlocks, may prevent Sturm Ruger’s board from objectively viewing the risks the company faces. Sturm Ruger’s director, Sandra Froman, who serves on the Risk Oversight committee, has been a member of the NRA’s board since 1992, and appears to impart NRA’s interests and influence in the company’s management. The influence of the NRA likely obscures Sturm Ruger’s objective view of risks faced by calls for reform, and may impede a consideration of proper solutions that would benefit shareholders, which Amalgamated believes creates the potential for financial harm should Sturm Ruger not act responsibly.

Everytown for Gun Safety has developed a set of three immediate policy positions and three operational reforms for Sturm Ruger and any other gun manufacturers can enact to address the risks to their business, and their shareholders in turn. Each of these criteria meet the stated goals of gun manufacturers to assist law enforcement, prevent guns from falling into the wrong hands, and promote evidence-based policymaking.

Amalgamated specifically calls on Sturm Ruger to enact the following reforms:

  • Policies the gun manufacturers should publically endorse:
    • Universal Background Checks
    • Adequate funding for the ATF to crack down on illegal distribution
    • Robust funding for CDC research into gun safety and public health
  • Operational reforms the manufacturers should commit to:
    • Responsible distribution contracts
    • Monitoring distribution chains
    • Investing in gun safety technology and commercialization

The letter asks Sturm Ruger to respond as to adopting these polices by May 4th, or the Bank will withhold support from Froman’s re-election as director at the May 9th board meeting.  A full copy of the shareholder letter can be found here.

Keith Mestrich, CEO of Amalgamated Bank, said, “Across the country, there is growing consensus that more must be done to promote safe and responsible gun measures.  As Everytown has said, the time for talk is over. Major gun manufacturers, including Sturm Ruger, display short-termism in their response to issues of gun safety. They fail to proactively adopt corporate social responsibility efforts commensurate with the lethality of their product, and display hypocrisy in touting adherence to the law while working with the NRA to weaken the law as much as possible. This creates significant financial and reputational risks that will adversely impact the company, and its long-term shareholders. As stewards for these shareholders, we are urging Sturm Ruger to demonstrate its independence from the NRA, and show Board stewardship and commitment to responsible corporate and social behavior by enacting these six reforms.”

Earlier this month, Amalgamated became the first bank to adopt Everytown’s guidelines for financial institutions to promote responsible practices from gun manufacturers and distributors.

About Amalgamated Bank

For nearly a century, Amalgamated Bank has served as America’s socially responsible bank, supporting forward-thinking organizations, companies, and individuals across the country. We are an advocate for those working to make the world more just, compassionate and sustainable. Our extensive experience, financial knowledge and community of like-minded customers offer a unique set of financial tools to customers. Amalgamated is the country’s largest B Corp® bank and a proud member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values. We don’t just have a mission. We are on a mission: to support those who support others, to invest in progressive and impactful causes and to advocate true financial opportunity for all.