New York passes legislation to prevent domestic abusers from possessing guns
iStock/Thinkstock(ALBANY, N.Y.) — New York’s Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the passage of new legislation that prevents those who have been convicted of domestic violence from possessing any kind of firearms, a move Cuomo said he hopes will “break the inextricable link between gun violence and domestic violence.”
“The recent wave of mass shootings is horrifying, and the federal government’s failure to act on any form of meaningful gun safety laws is unconscionable,” Cuomo said in a statement last Saturday announcing the legislation.
Cuomo added that he hopes this “common sense reform” will “break the inextricable link between gun violence and domestic violence,” and help “make New York safer and stronger.”
The legislation requires domestic abusers to surrender all firearms, not just handguns, according to governor’s office. In addition, upon conviction, a domestic abuser loses their gun license and must surrender their firearms.
The legislation cracks down on a loophole by bolstering the list of “serious” crimes that require the loss of a gun license and surrender of all firearms following conviction.
The presence of a gun in a domestic violence situation increases the risk of homicide by 500 percent, according to the advocacy group the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV). Moreover, 35 percent of all women killed by men are killed by intimate partners with guns, the NCADV reported.
Legislation that cracks down domestic abusers’ access to firearms can help prevent murders, according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, which provides 24/7 support for victims of domestic violence.
In states that require a background check for every handgun sale, 38 percent fewer women were shot to death by intimate partners, according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
The link between gun violence and domestic violence, which Cuomo cited in his statement, was thrust into the national spotlight last November, when it came to light that the suspect in a deadly rampage at a Texas church that left 26 people dead was able to purchase an assault rifle despite being convicted of domestic violence.
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