May 7, 2019 In the News

Governor Inslee Signs Package of Gun Violence Prevention Bills Into Law

OLYMPIA, WA – This morning, Governor Jay Inslee signed seven gun violence prevention bills into law. This marked the end of the most successful legislative session in the Alliance for Gun Responsibility’s history. The group saw 10 priority bills passed this session—more than in all previous sessions combined.

“I am so proud of the progress we made this legislative session,” said Renee Hopkins, CEO of the Alliance for Gun Responsibility. “We put forward our most robust legislative agenda ever and got more priority bills passed this session than in all previous sessions combined thanks to our new gun responsibility majority. It is encouraging to see our elected officials finally starting to catch up to their constituents on this issue. We owe a huge thank you to our champions in the legislature who worked tirelessly alongside us to pass so many of these lifesaving policies.”

One of the bills signed by the Governor this morning was HB 1786, which strengthens our protection order system. The passage of this bill and SSB 5143, the law enforcement and victim safety bill, means Washington state has the strongest laws in the nation when it comes to addressing the deadly intersection of domestic violence and gun violence.

Also among the bills signed today were two crucial suicide prevention bills: SSB 5181, which temporarily restricts access to firearms for individuals subject to an involuntary 72-hour hold and SB 5205, which closes a loophole that allowed people with a history of violence, and who had been found incompetent to stand trial, to remain legally eligible to purchase and possess firearms. Suicide accounts for nearly 80 percent of gun deaths in Washington state.

The governor also signed SHB 1739, which prohibits 3D-printed and untraceable firearms. This bill ensures that our laws are keeping pace with technology and closes a loophole that allowed dangerous individuals to circumvent our existing gun laws by printing or building firearms at home.

Finally, the governor signed three bills that make important updates and clarifications to existing gun violence prevention laws. Those include: ESSB 5027, which strengthens and clarifies our Extreme Risk Protection Order law; EHB 1465, which closed a newly-opened loophole that allowed anyone with a physical concealed pistol license, regardless of the validity of that license, to acquire a handgun without undergoing a background check at the point-of-sale; and SB 5508 which clarifies certain items about how the Washington State Patrol does background checks for concealed pistol licenses.

Throughout the 2019 legislative session the Alliance for Gun Responsibility was a constant presence in Olympia, supporting over 75 testifiers, making nearly 500 office visits, and sending over 432,000 emails to elected officials.