|One Year after Newtown, Iowa Has Little to Show for Protecting Citizens Iowa Scores C- on Gun Safety|
|News Releases - Civic News & Info|
|Written by Cheryl R. Thomas|
|Wednesday, 11 December 2013 13:26|
Des Moines, Iowa―Nearly a year after Newtown, Iowa still ranks low among states’ efforts to protect citizens against gun violence according to a new state analysis by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence.
Iowa received a C- and ranks sixteenth among states, in this year's, "2013 State Scorecard: Why Gun Laws Matter," produced by the organizations.
Iowa did not take up legislation to expand background checks. Policies like universal background checks on all guns not just hand guns can help to keep guns from falling into the wrong hands.
“When states act to pass stronger gun laws, those gun laws protect our citizens from gun violence and send a message to Congress that it is time to act. There is still work to be done in Iowa should be leading the way in creating a safer state we all deserve and our legislature can do more. We hope to see our legislators take action to keep us safe in the coming year,” added Rev. Cheryl R. Thomas of Iowans for Gun Safety.
Gun reform measures, like expanding background checks to all gun sales, are effective and popular policies. Recent polls show 9 in 10 Americans support expanding background checks to online and gun show sales. This includes over 80% of gun owners and 74% of NRA members. 88% of Iowans supported background checks in a February poll.
The deadly shooting in Newtown prompted eight states to pass major gun reforms in 2013.
Five states passed new laws requiring background checks on all gun sales. In addition, four states approved provisions requiring owners to report lost or stolen firearms to police, while three states enacted laws aimed at strengthening record-keeping and background check requirement for ammunition sales.
The state scorecard ranks all 50 states by letter grades and on a 100-point system that is based on laws that can prevent gun violence and reduce firearm death and injury.
States received points for having effective laws in each policy area, with stronger laws receiving more points. States lost points for irresponsible measures that increase the likelihood of gun violence, such as laws that allow individuals to carry loaded, concealed weapons in public without a permit. Ultimately, every state was awarded a letter grade indicating the overall strength or weakness of its gun laws.
This collaborative report empowers advocates by putting the Law Center’s in-depth research on America’s gun laws into the hands of the extensive networks of the Brady Campaign and States United to Prevent Gun Violence, a coalition of 27 state groups, so they can continue to fight for effective gun policies in communities across the country.
For more information about Iowa’s scores and scores of other states please visit the websites of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence http://bit.ly/GunLawsScorecard and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence http://bit.ly/GunLawsScorecard
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Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence (www.bradycampaign.org)
The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence works to pass, enforce, and protect sensible laws and public policy that address gun violence at the federal and state level. We do this by engaging and activating the American public, electing officials who support common sense gun laws, and increasing public awareness of gun violence.
Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence (www.smartgunlaws.org)
The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence is the only national law center focused on providing comprehensive legal expertise in support of gun violence prevention. Founded by lawyers after an assault weapon massacre at a San Francisco law firm in 1993, we remain dedicated to preventing the loss of lives caused by gun violence by providing trusted, in-depth research and information on America’s gun laws.
States United to Prevent Gun Violence (www.supgv.org)
States United to Prevent Gun Violence is a national nonprofit organization working to decrease gun death and injury. States United works with a network of 27 state-based gun-violence-prevention organizations, including Iowans for Gun Safety, that believe all Americans deserve to live in a country free from the fear, threat and devastation caused by gun violence.
Iowans for Gun Safety (www.facebook.com/IA4GS)
Iowans for Gun Safety is a broad coalition of groups and individuals working to reduce gun violence in Iowa through common sense solutions to violence. Founded in 2010 by Rev. Calos Jayne, Iowans for Gun Safety works with groups throughout the state of Iowa to reduce gun deaths by homicide, suicide and accident.
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