A Comprehensive Approach to Preventing Gun Violence
Positive change can happen. Americans have rallied, marched, and voted for this problem to no longer be ignored. Brady is committed to delivering life-saving change and comprehensive solutions to the American people. We owe it to ourselves, our families, and our communities to keep all Americans safe.
Expand background checks to nearly all gun sales and transfers
Brady Background Checks have long prevented many guns from falling into dangerous hands, but the system must be modernized to cover sales at gun shows and on the Internet. Passing legislation to expand background checks to nearly every gun sale, including those conducted online, at gun shows, and through private transfers, is our number one priority - and a common-sense way to save lives.
Expand the categories of persons prohibited from purchasing guns
It is critical to expand the categories of individuals considered too dangerous to possess guns. Under current law, dating partners who do not share a child in common do not qualify as “intimate partners” who could be prohibited from buying and owning firearms. Closing this “boyfriend loophole” - so dating partners convicted of domestic abuse will be treated the same as spouses - will protect more women experiencing dating violence. Additionally, those convicted of stalking and hate crime misdemeanors can still purchase and possess guns under current law. All of these loopholes must be closed.
Restrict access to assault weapons and high-capacity magazines
Weapons of war, including military-style assault rifles and high-capacity magazines, have no place on America’s streets or in its places of peace. These weapons, known for their ability to exact maximum destruction and casualties, are often the guns of choice for mass shooters. Congress must act to prevent civilian access to such weapons by enacting tighter restrictions on purchasing and possessing them.
Restrict accessories that make weapons of war even more lethal
The Administration clarified in December 2018 that bump stocks fall within the statutory definition of machine guns and are therefore illegal. Bump stocks are one of many devices that increase the rate of fire of a semi-automatic rifle to approximate the rate of fire of a fully automatic machine gun. The only way to ensure that bump stocks remain illegal - and to guarantee that similar accessories do not replace them - is for Congress to pass a law restricting these devices.
Outlaw the manufacture of ghost & 3D guns to protect public safety and uphold our background check system
Ghost & 3D guns allow criminals and others with dangerous intent to evade background checks by building firearms with purchased components or printing those components at home. Ghost guns lack serial numbers, so if found at a crime scene, the weapon’s origin or ownership is “invisible” to law enforcement. 3D guns can be made entirely of plastic, making most modern security devices like metal detectors ineffective. Similar to ghost guns, these firearms are manufactured without serial numbers and cannot be traced by law enforcement. These do not belong on our streets.
Congress must provide grants to encourage states to pass and implement extreme risk laws
15 states and Washington, D.C. have extreme risk protective order (ERPO) or gun violence restraining order (GVRO) laws that allow family members or law enforcement to petition a civil court to temporarily remove firearms from - and prohibit their purchase by - a person in crisis. These orders are based on behavioral indicators of dangerousness and contain due process protections for the individuals subject to the orders. Congress must provide grants to encourage states to pass these meaningful laws, as well as provide incentives for implementation and education programs that make the public aware of how to best utilize these protections.
Congress must appropriate funding for the CDC to study this epidemic
In the United States today, gun violence is a public health epidemic. To fully understand the scope of the problem and identify the best solutions to prevent gun violence, Congress must fund the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to conduct thorough, evidence-based research on the issue.
Federal funding for community-based programs would help stem urban gun violence
We must mitigate the disproportionate impact of gun violence on urban America and communities of color. Evidence-based gun violence prevention and intervention programs are proven to help break cycles of violence, and investments in these programs frequently pay for themselves several times over. Funding these programs at a federal level to ensure stable, long-term support would help stem the plague of urban gun violence.
Congress must help reduce unintentional shooting injuries and deaths
Every day, eight children and teens are unintentionally injured or killed due to family fire - a shooting involving an improperly stored or misused gun found in the home. To reduce unintentional shootings, Congress should pass laws encouraging safe storage through tax incentives; broaden the scope of firearms required to be sold with gun storage or safety devices; require safe storage warnings be issued with every gun purchase; mandate magazine disconnects that make a gun inoperable when the magazine is separated from the gun; and fund or mandate research, development, and manufacturing of “smart gun” technology.
Congress must repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA)
PLCAA provides the gun industry with special protections from civil lawsuits at the expense of victims of gun violence. Courts have held that in many cases, PLCAA removes key incentives for the gun industry to adopt life-saving business practices and instead provides cover to irresponsible gun dealers who supply the criminal gun market. This small minority of gun dealers profits from dangerous business practices with no accountability to their victims. No other American industry enjoys such civil immunity.
Congress must exercise its oversight powers to hold ATF accountable
A small minority of gun dealers engage in reckless and illegal practices that put Americans at risk of gun violence. The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) knows exactly who these actors are - yet allows them to stay in business. ATF dealer inspection reports show that ATF has allowed many of the worst violators in the gun industry to keep their licenses after failed compliance inspections. ATF’s failure to enforce the law and revoke the licenses of even repeat violators is a significant contributor to the country’s crime gun problem.
Congress should eliminate the Tiahrt Amendment
The corporate gun industry has hidden data from the public that would best inform policy solutions and better reveal how gun companies supply the criminal gun market. In 2003, the Tiahrt Amendment was first added to a bill funding the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and limited ATF from publicly disclosing information from the Firearms Trace System database. Over time, the Tiahrt Amendment has been interpreted to shield the most negligent gun dealers from public scrutiny while also depriving the public of key data to help stem the flow of illegal guns.