Gun Safety Reform

The League of Women Voters believes that the proliferation of handguns and semi-automatic assault weapons in the United States is a major health and safety threat to its citizens, and opposes legislation to Carry a Concealed Handgun (CCW). 

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From the onset, proponents claimed that the establishment of CCW in Ohio would make Ohioans safer. Indeed the opposite has been true. Now Ohioans are less safe than ever from gun violence.

Learn the facts. Take Action Now.  


 

Since the introduction of CCW in 2004, legislation has significantly expanded concealed and open carry gun rights. As of 2019, according to the CDC, the number of deaths per year in Ohio has increased by 70 % since CCW was enacted in 2004. (2)  Such a toll on human life has continued as this legislature has stripped cities of tools and mechanisms to protect citizens through the preemption of home rule police powers in 2006 and again in 2018. It has allowed guns to be carried more places with less accountability if someone is hurt or killed errantly (Stand-Your-Ground). Now, this legislative body would remove all government oversight for those who wish to carry a concealed handgun, or even possibly a concealed military style weapon. 

 

We have seen in Ohio and in the nation, a rise in the deadliness of mass shootings, both due to the clip size availability, and the lethality of the ammunition used.  We have seen the rise in the number and deadliness of school shootings. We have seen the rise of domestic terrorism against certain ethnic, religious, and racial groups where an AR-15 rifle has been used execution style against innocent people. 

 

During the early pandemic months of 2020, political pressures meant that Ohio gun stores stayed open as “essential businesses.” This gave rise to the largest sales of guns in Ohio and in the country since the FBI’s background check system for gun purchases (NICS data base) was brought online. Vulnerable communities, mostly poor and of color have paid the price. As gun sales spiked in Ohio, so did gun deaths in all of Ohio’s major Cities, where murder by firearm increased by 27%. (3)

 

Ohio legislators are aiming to eviscerate the few gun safety provisions we have in place. 

SUB HB 227 Summary

 

Modifies the name “concealed handgun license” to “concealed weapons license.”

Allows a person who is 21 or older (unless otherwise prohibited ) to carry a concealed deadly weapon without obtaining a concealed weapons license.

 

Permits a person who has a concealed weapons license to carry concealed any deadly weapon, instead of only a handgun.

(See bill text and analysis below for full and detailed information on SUB HB 227) 

SB 215 Summary

Provides that a person who is a “qualifying adult” is not required to obtain a concealed handgun license in order to carry a concealed handgun that is not a “restricted firearm.”

 

Defines “qualifying adult” as a person who is 21 years of age or older and who is not legally prohibited from possessing or receiving a firearm under specified federal or state law.

States that specified references to a concealed handgun licensee apply to a qualifying adult, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise; States that expiration, suspension, and revocation references to a concealed handgun license do not apply to a qualifying adult, unless the person has been issued a concealed handgun license.

 

Eliminates the requirement that a concealed handgun licensee must carry a concealed handgun license in order to carry a concealed handgun.

Eliminates the requirement that a concealed handgun licensee or qualified military member must notify a law enforcement officer or motor carrier enforcement unit employee that the person is authorized to carry a concealed handgun and is then carrying a handgun.


 

Permits expungement of convictions based on failure to comply with the notification requirements described in the preceding dot point.

 

Specifies that the mere carrying or possession of a handgun that is not a restricted firearm does not constitute grounds for any law enforcement officer or agent of the state, a county, a municipal corporation, or a township to conduct any search, seizure, or detention, no matter how temporarily, of an otherwise law-abiding person.

 

Establishes procedures for a pretrial immunity hearing in a tort action or criminal case related to a person’s use of force against another, regarding a claim of immunity based on the person’s self-defense, defense of another, or defense of the person’s residence.

(See bill text and analysis below for full and detailed information on SUB HB 227)