For Immediate Release
March 2, 2018
Contact: Katherine Levasseur
VERMONT HOUSE PASSES GUN VIOLENCE PROTECTION MEASURES
Montpelier, VT - Today, the Vermont House approved gun violence protection measures in H.675 that:
- Puts current practice into law giving the judge discretion to require any individual who is a risk to themselves or others to turn over weapons as of condition of pretrial release.
- Empowers family members and law enforcement to seek an Extreme Risk Protection Order, a court order temporarily restricting a person’s access to guns when they pose a danger to self or others (commonly called a 'Red Flag' bill).
- Provides protection to a victim of domestic assault by allowing a law enforcement officer, in certain circumstances, to remove a firearm from the scene if the removal is necessary for the protection of the officer, the victim, or another person.
- Creates a felony charge for the possession of a firearm on school ground with intent to harm.
“Recent events across the country and in our own communities in Vermont have heightened the awareness of threats against our schools, our children, and our educators,” said House Speaker Mitzi Johnson. “The State House was packed this week with middle and high school students, educators, and Vermonters concerned about gun violence. Support for the Second Amendment goes hand-in-hand with protecting Vermonters and keeping guns out of the hands of dangerous people. We heard the call for action from Vermonters and took a strong step forward today with the gun violence prevention bill. This is a step in the right direction that will make a difference for Vermont school children and families, and will save lives. The Senate took action on a similar bill and other gun violence prevention legislation this week. We look forward to working with them, and with the Governor to see comprehensive gun violence legislation pass in the coming weeks.”
“I’m proud of the strong approach the House took on gun violence this week,” added House Judiciary Chair, Representative Maxine Grad. “Last year, we passed a bill, H.422 that allows a cooling-off period after a citation or charge of domestic violence. We added this provision to new legislation, H.675 to strengthen the comprehensive gun violence package that will enhance safety in our schools and communities, and give law enforcement the tools that they need to address violent situations.”