ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Minnesota chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today released the following statement after a Minnesota House of Representatives committee voted to advance Red Flag legislation that would create an Extreme Risk Protection Order (HF 9).
“Police officers are often the first people to recognize when people pose an extreme risk to themselves or to others, and creating this way for them to act on serious warning signs will make all of us safer,” said Erin Zamoff, volunteer chapter leader with the Minnesota chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. “In the past year alone, nine states have enacted similar policies, and Minnesota law enforcement leaders have been asking the legislature to create this public safety tool here, too. I’m glad that lawmakers are listening.”
Polling conducted last year found 87 percent of Minnesotans support temporarily blocking a person from having guns if there are clear red flags.
A 2017 study of Connecticut’s Red Flag Law found one suicide was averted for approximately every 11 gun removals carried out under the law. Because firearms are an especially lethal means of self-harm, temporarily preventing a person in crisis from accessing firearms can mean the difference between life and death. Approximately 85 percent of gun suicide attempts end in death. By contrast, death occurs in less than 5 percent of cases where people attempt suicide by other means—and the vast majority of all those who survive do not go on to die by suicide.
More information about Red Flag laws is available here.