FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 8, 2022
Contact: Liam Forsythe, (310) 513-3469 (mobile)
Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Nanette Barragán (CA-44) joined her colleagues in the U.S. House of Representatives to pass the Protecting Our Kids Act. This life-saving gun violence prevention legislation would reduce our Nation’s growing gun violence epidemic with common-sense gun safety measures that will crack down on illegal gun trafficking, keep weapons of war out of the hands of teenagers, strengthen safe gun storage, restrict access to untraceable “ghost guns”, and more.
“Everyone in this country deserves to feel safe, and the legislation we passed this evening would go a long way to provide increased safety and security from gun violence. For the past two decades, the American people have called for rational, commonsense gun violence prevention. Yet, time and time again the wishes of the majority of Americans are ignored because of the gun lobby’s iron-grip on Republicans in Congress. Tragically, more than 110 Americans die from gun violence each day. According to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, guns are now the number one killer of children in the United States of America. We mourn for the victims – but countless people are impacted by every single instance of gun violence. Parents who will never see their kids again, brothers and sisters who will never play with their siblings again, survivors living with mental trauma, and entire families and communities shattered. Congress cannot become numb to the daily gun violence in this country.
Today, Congressional Democrats acted to address the epidemic of gun violence with legislation that would save lives, and Republicans chose to put their political survival over the survival of our children. This commonsense bill addresses many of the loopholes that allow guns to fall into the wrong hands, raises the age to purchase semi-automatic weapons to 21 years old, strengthens background checks, and enacts additional reforms that prevent gun violence and save lives.
I am grateful to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Nadler and my Democratic House Judiciary colleagues for their leadership on this issue. This bill will provide the tools, regulations, and resources we need to save countless lives from gun violence and keep families in California’s 44th Congressional District safe,” said Barragán.
This epidemic of gun violence has continued to tear through communities in California and across the country. Last month, Americans were horrified by mass shootings at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas and a supermarket in Buffalo, New York – both carried out by 18-year-olds legally armed with semi-automatic assault rifles. Just this past weekend, at least thirteen mass shootings terrorized more communities across the country.
The historic Protecting Our Kids Act takes key steps to address this crisis and safeguard Californian’s wellbeing. This bold legislative package incorporates several bills and provisions, including:
- Raising the purchasing age for semi-automatic weapons from 18 to 21 years old
- Cracking down on gun trafficking and straw purchases to get illegal guns off our streets
- Subjecting ghost gun purchases to background check requirements (Title 3)
- Strengthening safe storage requirements to protect children from accidental shootings
- Closing the bump stock loophole to ban these deadly tools from civilian use
- Outlawing high-capacity magazines, which are designed for killing en masse and have been the accessory of choice in the bloodiest mass shootings
- Requiring an annual report of demographic data of those being determined to be ineligible to purchase guns
The Protecting Our Kids Act builds on the House’s twice-passed legislation advancing universal background checks for all gun purchases, action that is supported by nearly nine in ten Americans. Tomorrow, the House will vote on additional legislation establishing extreme risk protection orders, empowering courts to keep firearms out of the hands of individuals who pose a danger to themselves or others.
This bill will now head to the Senate for consideration.
Nanette Diaz Barragán is proud to represent California’s 44th Congressional District, which includes the communities of Carson, Compton, Florence-Firestone, Lynwood, North Long Beach, Rancho Dominguez, San Pedro, South Gate, Walnut Park, Watts, Willowbrook and Wilmington. She serves as chairwoman of the House Homeland Security Committee’s Subcommittee on Border Security, and on the House Energy and Commerce Health, Energy, and Environment & Climate Change Subcommittees