PA House Passes Landmark Domestic Violence Gun Bill; Offenders Must Relinquish Firearms

Contributed by Shawna Mizelle 

The right to bear arms and laws surrounding the right have been debated within U.S. government for some time now. With mass shootings becoming a common reoccurrence many constituents have urged law makers to make a change. It seems that the Pennsylvania state senate has heard those pleas. Although, their next move will not end mass shootings it is a step towards getting guns out of the hands of violent offenders.

Yesterday, the Pennsylvania state senate passed a bill that would force domestic violence offenders to relinquish their fire arms in a more timely manner compared to policies that are already in place. Currently, offenders have 60 days to get rid of their fire arms following a Protection from Abuse Order. The bill would change that time frame to 24 hours following a Protection from Abuse Order. Domestic violence offenders would also have to give their gun to their lawyer or some form of law enforcement instead of giving it to family or a friend.

Facts that support the legislation include the 78 domestic violence deaths in Pennsylvania that included a fire arm from 2017-2018.

The bill was passed 131-62. Senators like Tom McGarrigle (R-26) have been very vocal in their support for the measure. Sen. McGarrigle said, “This bill protects those that are a part of a domestic abuse situation. This bill does not take guns from those who are responsible gun owners.”

Senator Tom Killon (R-9) echoed similar sentiments, “This is a good bill. It’s on the governor’s desk, he’s already said he’ll sign it, and it’s going to make Pennsylvania a safer place. And domestic violence victims will be able to sleep at night.”

Deb Marteslo, a volunteer leader with the Pennsylvania chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America said, “Over the last four years, domestic violence survivors, law enforcement officials, local elected officials and people across the state fought tirelessly for this bill to become law. We are so grateful for your efforts. Today our legislature listened and put Pennsylvania families first, passing legislation will save lives.”

Above: The Lieutenant Governor even chimed in via Twitter.

This a big step for Pennsylvania, and maybe other states will follow.

WHUR Contributor


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