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gun violence prevention wins

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4 gun violence prevention bill near becoming law

Bills approved by legislature await final signatures

Four pivotal gun violence prevention bills have made it through both houses of the Washington State Legislature and are headed to Governor Jay Inslee, the final signature that would turn them into law.  Last year, parents told Seattle’s Child that ending gun violence and children’s safety were their highest concerns for their kids. 

“This significant progress serves as a testament to the dedication of countless individuals,” Alliance for Gun Responsibility CEO Renée Hopkins said in a victory email Wednesday.We are indeed taking substantial steps towards creating a safer future for all Washingtonians.”  Here’s what the bills will do if they are signed in to law:

Expanding the places where guns are not allowed

Senate Bill 5444 expands the list of public places where firearms cannot be openly carried. It adds public libraries, zoos, aquariums, and transit stations because they are all places where children are likely to be. 

Requiring a ‘code of conduct’ for dealers

House Bill 2118 would create a “code of conduct” for firearms dealers to protect the public. The bill includes new record-keeping requirements, background checks for employees, security of sale sites, and storage of inventory, as well as a requirement for $1 million in liability insurance. 

Requiring fast reporting of lost or stolen guns

HB 1903 is now headed to the Governor’s desk and requires gun owners to report a lost or stolen gun within 24 hours. Anyone who does not report a loss or theft would face a civil charge and a fine. Click here to learn more about HB 1903. The bill currently awaiting signatures of Speak of the House, Senate President and Governor to become law.

Ensuring guns are actually destroyed

HB 2021 addresses the issue of firearms parts being recycled by clearly defining what is meant by “destroy” when it comes to gun relinquishment. The bill is mindful of the fact that ghost guns are illegal guns that are most often used in crimes. The bill currently awaiting signatures of Speak of the House and Governor to become law.

Update 03/04/2024: Approved by both Senate and House; awaiting signatures of Speak of the House and Governor to become law.

Washington leading in the anti-gun violence effort

If signed by Gov. Inslee, the two proposed laws would expand Washington’s efforts to curb gun-related injuries in deaths. Other successful legislative efforts include: 

  • a ban on assault weapons 
  • a restriction on open carry in specific locations 
  • the creation of “red flag” laws to provide ways to intervene before a gun event occurs 
  • a restriction on high-capacity magazines and bump stocks 
  • a requirement for background checks on sales of all firearms, and many others 

Groups such as Seattle-based Grandmothers Against Gun Violence, Washington State PTA, and the national Moms Demand Action, have been rallying their volunteers to attend public hearings and to testify on bills under consideration for months. 

Read more:

Leg 2024: Stay updated on potential laws that impact kids

DNR asks for $1.65 million for youth program

School funding: Hold the state accountable

WA capital gains tax funds state early learning programs and more

Grandmothers to lawmakers: Protect kids from guns

Fight for tighter gun control continues

State trust funds for low-income babies?

The case for a WA commission on boy and men

Statwide Children’s Alliance agenda for children in 2024

 

 

About the Author

Cheryl Murfin

Cheryl Murfin is managing editor at Seattle's Child. She is also a certified doula, lactation educator for NestingInstinctsSeattle.com and a certified AWA writing workshop facilitator at Compasswriters.com.