Every year, our attorneys comb the thousands of gun bills introduced into state legislatures across the nation. We’re looking for the bills that will have an impact—both positive and negative—on the devastating effects of gun violence in America.
So far, in 2015, we’ve tracked, summarized, and analyzed 1160 gun bills, and there are still more to come—some states, like California, haven’t finished their legislative cycle yet.
Some standout trends we’ve noticed this year include:
- Background Checks: Oregon tightened its lifesaving background check requirements to close the private sale loophole, which makes it harder for prohibited people to purchase guns. Nevada voters will have the chance to cast a ballot on universal background checks in 2016. Eighteen states currently have some form of background checks for private sales.
- Domestic Violence: A multiyear trend, we’ve counted 18 states who passed domestic violence gun laws since 2013, making it harder for abusers to get guns and easier for law enforcement to remove guns from abusers who own them. With American women 11 times more likely to be killed with a gun than women in other high-income countries, these smart gun laws are essential to protecting victims of domestic violence.
- Defensive Victories: We’ve seen significant momentum in defeating gun lobby priorities like allowing firearms in schools—campus carry bills were defeated in 14 states and another 15 bills allowing concealed weapons at K—12 schools failed, thanks to efforts by gun violence prevention advocates.
To get the full picture of 2015’s legislative trends, check out the Gun Law Trendwatch 2015 Mid-Year Update. And don’t forget–in December we’ll release an end-of-year summary of all the state legislative activity in 2015, as well as our annual Gun Law State Scorecard, which ranks the states based on the strength of their gun laws.