Assemblywoman Griffin Passes Legislation to Reduce Gun Violence, Protect New Yorkers

Assemblywoman Judy Griffin (D-Rockville Centre) announced that legislation she championed to curb gun violence in New York, including removing guns from dangerous individuals, banning bump stocks and keeping guns out of schools, has passed the Assembly.

“In order to address the scourge of gun violence in our schools, it is critical that we enact common sense gun legislation while simultaneously increasing access to mental health treatment. A proactive approach is necessary to save lives and reduce the detrimental impact the imminent threat of violence has on our children.” said Assemblywoman Judy Griffin. "Teachers are trained to educate students not to defend them with firearms in the classroom.  Arming educators is not a viable solution since it increases the risk of accidental injury or death while creating an atmosphere of fear and stress.”

Griffin authored legislation that prohibits school administrators from arming teachers or other school employees in K-12 schools across the state (A.1715-A). The measure ensures only qualified and capable individuals – school resource officers, law enforcement and security guards – are legally allowed to carry guns on school grounds.

The package also provides safeguards to keep guns out of the hands of individuals deemed to be a threat to themselves or others (A.2689). If an individual is considered to be a risk by a family member, school administrator or law enforcement officer, a court can issue an extreme risk protection order (ERPO) to prohibit them from buying or possessing a firearm for up to one year.

The Assembly also passed legislation prohibiting the possession, manufacture, transport, shipment and sale of devices that accelerate the firing rate of firearms, including bump stocks (A.2684). A bump stock was used to carry out the deadliest shooting in our country’s history when a gunman killed 58 people in Las Vegas in October 2017.[1] Attaching modification devices like bump stocks to a firearm is already banned in New York State, but there is no restriction on the sale or possession of these attachments.

In an effort to ensure more thorough background checks, Griffin co-sponsored a bill to extend the waiting period before a gun may be sold to a purchaser whose background check is not completed from three to 30 days (A.2690). This would give the FBI more time to investigate a potential purchaser whose background check raises red flags.  

Additionally, the legislative package includes measures that:

  • require out-of-state citizens who have homes in New York to waive the confidentiality of their home state mental illness records when applying for a New York State firearm license (A.1213); and
  • create the “Municipal Gun Buyback Program” to allow individuals to turn in firearms while receiving immunity from certain criminal possession charges and providing them with a monetary award (A.2685).

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[1] latimes.com/nation/la-na-vegas-shooting-timeline-revised-20171009-story.html