- January 8 - The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence united with the Million Mom March and the nation's leading state-based gun violence prevention groups today released "report cards" for every state in America, educating citizens about how their state's leaders are doing on laws and policies that promote a reduction in gun violence.
Sensible Safety Stars were awarded to ten states for protecting children from gun violence last year. Sensible Safety Star states heeded the concern of their residents by resisting efforts to weaken common sense laws and by enacting laws that protect children from guns. Nine other states were sent to the "Time-Out Chair" for irresponsibly weakening state gun laws and thereby endangering the welfare of the states children.
Unfortunately, 31 states received grades of D or F in this year's report cards. Not surprisingly, many of these states have child and teen firearm death rates that are higher than the national average. For example, the average firearms death rate of youth in the eight states that received an F grade was 33 percent higher than the average firearms death rate for the 10 states that received an A or a B.
"In some states, real progress is being made in passing laws that will help stem the tide of gun violence in America - but unfortunately, many American states don't make the grade," said Michael Barnes, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence United with the Million Mom March. "At the federal and the state level, there's a lot more that must be done."
Report cards for each of the 50 states can be found at http://www.bradycampaign.org.
Each state was carefully rated on seven types of legislation that protect children from gun violence, with "extra credit" or "demerits" awarded for additional relevant legislation. The information in each state report card includes:
-- Juvenile Possession of Guns - Is it illegal for a child to possess a gun without supervision?
-- Sale/Transfer of Guns to Juveniles - Is it illegal to sell a gun to a child?
-- Safe Storage and Gun Owner Accountability - Are gun owners held responsible for leaving loaded guns easily accessible to children?
-- Childproof Guns and Gun Design Safety - Are guns required to have child-safety locks, loaded-chamber indicators and other childproof designs? Are there restrictions on unsafe Saturday night specials?
-- Preemption - Do cities and counties have authority to enact local gun laws?
-- Secondary "Private" Gun Sale Background Checks - Are background checks required at gun shows and between "private" parties?
-- Carrying Concealed Weapons (CCW) - Is it legal to carry concealed handguns in public?
As the nation's largest national, non-partisan, chapter-based grassroots organization leading the fight to prevent gun violence, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence united with the Million Mom March is dedicated to creating an America free from gun violence, where all Americans are safe at home, at school, at work, and in their communities.