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The Gun Control Debate Rages on

In the wake of the deadly February shooting at a Parkland high school, lawmakers and citizens alike are engaged in a heated debate about gun control. How do we stop this from happening? Can it be stopped from happening? The last day of Florida’s state legislative session is March 9, leaving lawmakers with only one more week to determine the fate of firearms in Florida.

Legislation in Florida

On Monday, February 26th, hundreds of Floridians along with students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School met at the state Capitol and called for stronger gun legislation. Those hoping for a ban on assault-style rifles were disappointed, as the proposal failed to pass a senate subcommittee. However, two more proposals are currently moving forward in Tallahassee. SB 7026 aims to create programs that will train faculty and staff in firearm safety and proficiency. SB 7024 exempts victims of mass violence from public records requirements. In total, there are several bills relating to the Parkland shooting up for debate before the Florida House and Senate this week. Among the proposed legislation are bills set to raise the minimum age needed to purchase a gun, create a three-day waiting period for gun purchases, and increase firearm-related safety measures in schools. Democratic and Republican lawmakers alike have supported bans on assault rifles and more specifically, AR-15’s, the gun that was used in both the Parkland shooting as well as the shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando.

Legislation in the United States

The governor of Rhode Island signed an executive order this week, creating a policy that would remove firearms from people deemed a danger to themselves or others. Citing a lack of support from the federal government, Gov. Gina Raimondo took matters into her own hands. Connecticut, California, Washington, Oregon, and Indiana currently all have similar “red flag” laws in place. Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Massachusetts have banded together in order to stop gun violence, planning to create an inter-state database to track firearms.

One day after the Parkland incident, Oregon’s house passed a bill that would make it illegal for those convicted of domestic violence crimes or with active restraining orders against them to possess firearms. A bill was filed in Washington last week to raise the legal age to purchase a semi-automatic weapon to 21. The Illinois house is voting this week on two gun-related bills: one is a “red flag” law that would restrict access to firearms for dangerous individuals, and the other would require all firearm sellers to be licensed. The state is also planning to introduce legislation that would raise the minimum age needed to purchase assault rifles to 21. The Vermont state senate is currently debating a number of bills to tighten gun control, including one allowing for removal of weapons from those deemed dangerous (another “red flag” law) and one expanding background checks.

Call Pallegar Law, P.A. If You Need Legal Representation

If you or someone you know has been charged with a gun crime, contact Pallegar Law, P.A. today. Call 813-444-3912 for a free consultation.

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