(Albany, NY) Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins passed comprehensive, common-sense gun violence prevention legislation on Wednesday. The package of bills aimed at curbing the gun violence epidemic and making communities safer. The reforms were passed in honor of victims and survivors of gun violence, ahead of National Gun Violence Awareness Day.
“The Senate Democratic Majority, under my leadership, has prioritized ending gun violence and making our home and streets safer,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said. “We must do everything we can to eliminate the scourge of violence that has cut too many lives short and devastated too many families. By enacting this important legislation, we take another step closer towards further ending gun violence. I thank the sponsors for putting forth these life-saving provisions and look forward to continuing to work on common-sense reforms that will keep our communities safe.”
The legislation will take action to hold gun makers accountable and ban the sale of ghost guns. Bills include making it possible for victims and survivors of gun violence to file lawsuits against gun makers (S.1048A), cracking down on imitation weapons (S.687), prohibiting the sale of ghost guns and limiting their possession to only licensed gunsmiths (S.14A), making penalties stricter for anyone who sells an unfinished receiver (S.13A) or who purchases a gun while knowingly has a warrant out for their arrest (S.5000B), enacting a 10-day waiting period to purchase a gun (S.1235), tracking better where guns are obtained (S.1251), and establishing a firearm violence research institute and a firearm violence research fund (S.2981).
Nick Suplina, Managing Director for Law and Policy at Everytown for Gun Safety, said, “With the passage of S.1048A through the New York Senate, New York has once again proven themselves to be a national leader, taking a meaningful step toward holding the gun industry accountable for its misconduct and negligence. The gun violence prevention package passed today will help ensure the safety of New York’s communities and continue to set the standard for gun safety across the country. We urge the Assembly to take swift action and send these bills to the Governor’s desk.”
Wendy Szymanski, a volunteer with the New York chapter of Moms Demand Action, said, “Victims who have been harmed by gun violence deserve justice. By passing S.1048A, Senator Myrie and the New York Senate have created a clear path that gives victims the opportunity to hold accountable the gun manufacturers and dealers whose misconduct and irresponsible practices fuel the epidemic of gun violence.”
David Pucino, Senior Staff Attorney for Giffords Law Center, said, “This package of bills further solidifies New York’s status as a national leader in gun safety, said "Among other key advances, it will promote accountability in the gun industry by providing a path for civil liability for industry misconduct, something the gun lobby has long opposed. It will also prohibit untraceable ghost guns, helping protect New Yorkers from this fast-rising threat. We commend the Senate for advancing these life-saving bills.”
This current bill package builds on previous legislation passed under Stewart-Cousins's leadership to stand up to the corporate gun lobby and protect New Yorkers from gun violence.