Press Release

Giffords Commends New York Legislature for Passing Gun Violence Prevention Package that Puts Safety of New Yorkers First

Package includes legislation to establish an extreme risk protection order that would allow the removal of firearms from dangerous individuals

January 29, 2019Giffords, the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and Captain Mark Kelly, applauded the New York State Legislature for passing a sweeping package of bills that seek to reduce gun violence in the Empire State. The initiative, which includes six pieces of gun safety legislation, would further  lifesaving policies like establishing an extreme risk protection order (ERPO) that creates a process for removing guns from people who are a danger to themselves or others.

“Gun violence is a public safety threat that causes tragedies in communities across New York every single day,” said Nico Bocour, state legislative director at Giffords. “In recent years, leaders in New York have understood that the best way to address this epidemic is by passing stronger gun safety laws. This trailblazing legacy continues today as lawmakers show they are determined to continue protecting the lives of all New Yorkers. We are pleased to see this robust package pass today thanks to the courage of legislators like Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Senators Brian Kavanagh and Brad Hoylman along with Speaker Carl Heastie and Assemblymember JoAnne Simons who are willing to take on gun violence. This will help build a brighter future for New York and we look forward to watching the Governor sign these bills into law and continuing his leadership on gun safety.”

S2451, introduced by Senator Brian Kavanagh, establishes an ERPO which allows for a civil court order, issued by a judge upon consideration of evidence provided by a family member or law enforcement officer, that temporarily prohibits a person in crisis from possessing or purchasing firearms or ammunition. A common thread in many shootings is that family members of the shooters had noticed their loved ones engaging in dangerous behaviors and were concerned about their risk of harming themselves or others—even before any violence occurred.

Other lifesaving legislation includes:

  • S2374, Allow Up to 30 Days for Background Checks: An act to amend the penal law and the general business law, in relation to extending time up to thirty calendar days for national instant background checks.
  • S2448, Ban Bump Stocks and Similar Devices: An act to amend the penal law, in relation to prohibiting the possession, manufacture, transport, and disposition of rapid-fire modification devices.
  • S101A, Don’t Arm Educators: An act to amend the penal law, in relation to limiting educational institutions’ ability to authorize the possession of a weapon on school grounds.
  • S2438, Review Out-of-State Mental Health Records: An act to amend the penal law, in relation to access to foreign state records.
  • S2449, Promote Buyback Programs: An act to amend the executive law, in relation to establishing the municipal gun buyback program; and to amend the state finance law, in relation to the municipal gun buyback program fund.