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Giffords Praises Delaware Senate’s Approval of Lifesaving Gun Safety Legislation

    Washington DCGiffords, the gun safety group co-founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, applauds the Delaware Senate’s advancement of a critical gun safety bill. The legislation, which creates a permitting process for gun purchases, now advances to the House.

    “The Delaware Senate’s passage of SB 3 marks significant progress towards protecting Delawareans from gun violence,” said Molly Voigt, state legislative manager at Giffords. “Responsible gun ownership starts with background checks and proper safety training. This permitting process will establish safer practices for buying and handling handguns. Giffords thanks the Senate for taking swift action on this important bill and calls on the House to send the legislation to Governor Carney.”

    SB 3mandates that any prospective handgun buyer must obtain a permit after passing a comprehensive background check and complete a gun safety course. Current Delaware law only requires those who carry a concealed firearm to receive training and a permit. Permit-to-purchase laws are a crucial step towards keeping firearms in the hands of responsible gun owners and empowering safe ownership. In April 2020, Giffords Law Center published a report outlining the effectiveness of and broad support for licensing and permitting laws. 

    Earlier this year, Giffords joined the Delaware Coalition Against Gun Violence in issuing an in-state poll of registered voters, which illustrated broad support across the state for permit-to-purchase legislation. More than two in three Delaware voters support this proposal, with broad majorities expressing “strong support”—including gun owners, Republicans, and residents of all three counties, compared to less than 30% who oppose the concept. Support for the proposal increased with the inclusion of firearms training, with 62% of Delaware voters more likely to support the concept with the training piece, including 64% of Independent women and 58% of Republican women. 

    Since 2016, Giffords has worked with partners and elected officials in Delaware to take action on gun safety while protecting the rights of law-abiding Americans to own firearms. Since then, the state has passed landmark gun safety legislation, including a 2016 bill that closed a dangerous background check loophole, as well as a ban on trigger activators and an extreme risk protection order law in 2018.