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Congressman Anthony Brown’s Statement on House Passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act

Too many families know the pain of losing a loved one to senseless gun violence. Today, after decades of unacceptable inaction and heartbreak”

"This legislation is another step forward in our efforts to honor the victims of gun violence with action. We must continue pushing for greater reform to end gun violence once and for all.”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Anthony G. Brown (MD-04) released the following statement praising the passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act:

“Too many families know the pain of losing a loved one to senseless gun violence. Today, after decades of unacceptable inaction and heartbreak, Congress took important steps to make our communities, neighbors and children safer. This legislation tightens our gun laws and invests in mental health and the safety of students.

“Particularly important is the inclusion of language to finally close the dating partner loophole, also known as the “boyfriend loophole,” which has allowed too many domestic abusers to slip through the cracks and buy weapons to escalate their violence. Twenty people every minute experience intimate partner violence in the United States. When I first came to Congress, I began advocating for the extension of protections to all individuals experiencing dating partner violence. I am glad to see this effort finally come to fruition in order to keep guns out of the hands of abusers. 

“Our country experiences mass shootings almost every day. And in communities around the country, particularly communities of color, gun violence remains ever present. This legislation is another step forward in our efforts to honor the victims of gun violence with action. We must continue pushing for greater reform to end gun violence once and for all.”

Key provisions of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act include:

  • Support for State Crisis Intervention Orders: Incentivizing states to implement extreme risk protection order laws to keep weapons out of the hands of individuals who pose a danger to themselves or others.

  • Protections for Victims of Domestic Violence: Closing the “Boyfriend Loophole” by adding convicted abusers to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

  • Cracking Down on Gun Trafficking and Straw Purchases: Preventing dangerous individuals from illegally evading background checks by establishing new federal criminal offenses that cover straw purchasing and trafficking.

  • Enhanced Background Checks for Buyers Under 21: Requiring longer, enhanced background checks of up to ten days for gun buyers under 21 years of age.

  • Anti-Violence Community Initiatives: Providing $250 million in funding for community-based violence prevention initiatives. 

  • Child and Family Mental Health Services: Improving access to mental health services for children, youth and families through Medicaid, CHIP and other programs.

  • Investments in School Safety: Expanding mental health and supportive services in schools, including early identification and intervention programs.

During the 117th Congress, Congressman Brown reintroduced the Protecting Domestic Violence and Stalking Victims Act which closes the dating partner loophole by expanding the definition of “intimate partner” to include current and former dating partners, puts temporary restraining orders on par with permanent restraining orders by restricting the possession of a firearm under a temporary order and brings stalking in line with other domestic crimes, keeping firearms out of the hands of convicted stalkers.

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