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Major firms cut ties with NRA after social media storm over Florida school shooting

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24 February 2018

A sizeable number of companies have cut or are planning to cut ties to the National Rifle Association after consumers took to social media to voice outrage against the gun lobby, days after a Florida high-school shooting left 17 people dead.

Insurance giants Chubb Ltd and MetLife, cybersecurity firm Symantec Corp, and Enterprise Holdings, which operates the Enterprise, Alamo and National rental car chains, were among those that said they would end partnerships with the powerful NRA.

With 5 million members, the NRA is known for its staunch resistance to gun controls in the US.

The growing exodus of corporate names, ranging from a major insurer to car rental brands and a household moving company, comes after the NRA launched a counter-offensive against a student-led campaign for tighter US gun ownership laws.

According to a list compiled by ThinkProgress, an advocacy organisation, there are at least 22 corporations that have been offering discounts to NRA members. As the #BoycottNRA movement picks up steam, several of these have cut ties or plan to do so.

According to a Yahoo Finance report, other companies that are dropping their partnership with the NRA are First National Bank of Omaha, major car rental firms Hertz, Avis, and TrueCar, hotel chains Best Western and Wyndham Hotels, and two moving companies under SIRVA.

At the same time, gun control activists are stepping up pressure on Amazon.com Inc and other online streaming platforms to drop the online video channel NRATV, featuring gun-friendly programming produced by the NRA.

Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, founded after 20 first-graders were shot and killed at a Connecticut school in 2012, sent letters to Apple, AT&T, Amazon, Alphabet's Google and Roku on Friday, asking them to drop NRATV from their platforms.

AT&T said it does not carry NRATV. None of the other companies immediately responded to media requests for comment.

Corporate lawyers say the NRA could argue for money damages if those companies terminate the long-term contract before the expiration date, but they feel it is unlikely to do so.

The issue of gun control, and the NRA's role in opposing it, became the focus of renewed national debate on 14 February, when a former student killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, with an AR-15 assault rifle he had purchased legally.





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