Washington, D.C., June 22, 2022 - Today, Brady urges the U.S. Senate to swiftly pass the Safer Communities Act, the bill crafted by a bipartisan coalition of senators to address the nation’s gun violence crisis.
Brady President Kris Brown shared:
“The Safer Communities Act is a historic step forward for the nation. This bill includes a landmark $250 million for evidence-based community violence intervention programs and significant investment for states and local governments to implement gun violence prevention policies and programs that support law enforcement, mental health services and protect communities. As we have said, the very existence of the bipartisan framework, and now this legislative text, is a victory for the basic truth that better regulation of firearms can save lives and a defeat of the gun lobby’s dollar-fueled chokehold on action to address our gun violence crisis. In fact, the NRA has already opposed this bill, even as a majority of Senators agreed to move it forward. Nowhere is the gun lobby’s loss of influence and divorce from the desires of the American people more evident than the fact that this bill partially closes the deadly “Boyfriend Loophole,” which up until this Congress was a poison pill and barrier to passing the Violence Against Women Act because of gun lobby opposition This bill will save lives and it also represents hope that our American political system is capable of tackling gun violence.
That reality is due to the constant cries for change from communities and activists across the country. This bill does not satisfy those cries; but it puts our nation on the right path to do so. It upends over two decades of political cowardice and must usher in a new era in bipartisan agreement on the need to protect public safety and prevent gun violence. The Senators who have negotiated this deal deserve credit for putting the public interest above politics. We applaud their work and courage and urge the remainder of the Senate to pass this bill without delay.”
About the Bill Text:
The text of this legislation builds out the policy areas agreed to in the bipartisan framework announced on June 12, 2022. Significantly, this legislation will address the so-called “boyfriend loophole,” a current gap in federal law which permits some individuals subject to domestic violence restraining orders or who are convicted of domestic violence abuses to legally purchase or possess a firearm. The bill likewise creates new requirements for federal firearm licensee designation, new federal standards for straw purchases and trafficking firearms, and a mechanism to ensure that individuals who exhibited signs of dangerousness as minors are appropriately evaluated when seeking to purchase a firearm. Finally, the bill includes new funds available to states to support extreme risk protection laws and crisis prevention programs, and funds for both mental health resources and school safety programs.
Brady has one powerful mission — to unite all Americans against gun violence. We work across Congress, the courts, and our communities with over 90 grassroots chapters, bringing together young and old, red and blue, and every shade of color to find common ground in common sense. In the spirit of our namesakes Jim and Sarah Brady, we have fought for over 45 years to take action, not sides, and we will not stop until this epidemic ends. It’s in our hands.