The majority of Virginians support common-sense gun violence prevention policies. But new, life-saving laws are at risk of repeal. We’re urging Virginia state senators to #StandWithVirginia and represent the will of the people!
Over the last two years, Virginia has seen an epidemic of gun violence worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has disproportionately impacted communities of color. Despite these challenges, the Virginia General Assembly has delivered the will of the people and created a safer Virginia by passing an entire slate of gun violence prevention bills.
Virginia’s best defense to rising gun violence is protecting the state’s comprehensive set of evidence-based policies that are proven to save lives. But right now, these lifesaving laws are at risk of being repealed. They’re under threat by newly elected anti-gun sense legislators, including a new House majority that is self-interestedly catering to the gun lobby over their constituents.
We can’t roll back Virginia’s life-saving progress. We’re uniting to urge state senators to reflect the will of the people and protect Virginia’s hard-won progress in preventing gun violence. The facts speak for themselves:
86% of Virginia voters support requiring background checks on all gun sales
76% of Virginia voters oppose permitless concealed carry
73% percent support extreme risk laws, also known as “red flag” laws
Fighting the dangerous repeal of any of Virginia's sensible gun violence prevention laws is a matter of life and death, period.
Read on to learn how you can #StandWithVirginia!
Raise your voice and #StandWithVirginia
Here's how you can take action now to protect our safety
What’s at stake? These common-sense gun violence prevention laws, which have already been at work saving lives:
A life-saving extreme risk law that’s already proven effective
According to polling, 73% percent of Virginians support extreme risk laws, also known as a “red flag” law. Virginia’s landmark new law established a civil court process to temporarily remove access to firearms from an individual at risk of harming themselves or others. Research shows that extreme risk laws prevent gun homicides and suicide, with one study finding that one life is saved for every 10-20 ERPOs issued.
For the first year after the law was implemented in Virginia, 128 emergency risk orders and 74 final risk orders were issued in the Commonwealth. If the Commonwealth’s extreme law were repealed, more Virginian lives would be put in danger.
An evidence-based ban limiting an individual from purchasing more than one handgun a month
“One handgun a month” laws like Virginia’s are crucial in preventing illegal bulk purchases by straw purchasers. A repeal of this law would escalate gun trafficking into neighboring states, which is exactly what happened in 2012 when Virginia’s one-gun-per-month law was repealed. According to ATF trace data, 533 guns originating from Virginia were recovered in Maryland in 2014 and by 2020, that number grew to 1,070.
It’s abundantly clear that a repeal of this law would once again escalate gun trafficking into neighboring states.
Stronger child access prevention (CAP) laws proven to prevent “family fire,” or injuries from unsecured firearms at home
A new Virginia law increased the penalty for recklessly leaving a loaded, unsecured firearm around children under the age of 14. Research shows that child access prevention laws, like Virginia’s, are effective in preventing gun deaths and injuries among children.
Expanded background checks on gun sales, as supported by 86% of Virginia voters
Under Virginia’s new universal background check law, prohibited gun purchasers – like people with felony records or those convicted of domestic abuse – can no longer bypass background checks by purchasing guns online, at gun shows, or from unlicensed sellers. A new law also expanded the amount of time Virginia State Police have to complete background checks from 3 to 5 business days, ensuring prohibited purchasers are less likely to get their hands on deadly weapons.
Preventing people charged with domestic abuse from easily accessing firearms
A new gun violence prevention law prevents the purchase and possession of firearms by individuals convicted of assault and battery of a family or household member. Another new law expands these kinds of protections outside of family members. We know that the presence of a firearm during a domestic dispute makes fatal injury 12 times more likely than disputes without firearms.
Repealing these protections would put survivors and victims of domestic violence at greater risk.
Empowered Virginia localities to adopt local solutions to prevent gun violence
Communities thrive when they are able to respond to their own needs. Repealing this law would weaken the power to enact sensible, community-driven solutions to prevent gun violence across the Commonwealth.