MONTPELIER, Vt. – The Vermont chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today released the following statement praising Vermont’s Republican Governor Phil Scott and state lawmakers for enacting historic gun violence prevention legislation in Vermont. The legislation is particularly significant given that Vermont is a rural state with a long hunting tradition that has rejected gun safety bills in the recent past.
The legislation signed today includes a requirement for a criminal background check on every gun sale, making Vermont the 20th state to close the background check loophole. It also prohibits the sale of high capacity magazines and bump stocks to help reduce the lethality of shootings and raises the minimum age to purchase firearms to 21.
Additionally, it establishes a Red Flag Law, which empowers law enforcement to work with the State’s Attorney or Attorney General to request an Extreme Risk Protection Order that would temporarily restrict a person’s access to firearms to prevent them from harming themselves or others. This life-saving tool can help prevent mass shootings and gun suicide and keep warning signs from escalating into tragedies. This policy will also protect survivors of domestic violence by empowering law enforcement to temporarily remove firearms from domestic violence situations before abusers use them to harm their families, law enforcement officers or others.
STATEMENT FROM ALI HARTMAN, VOLUNTEER WITH THE VERMONT CHAPTER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“In the wake of the Parkland shooting and our own averted high school shooting at Fair Haven High school, the need for gun safety legislation to protect children and families in our state was glaringly apparent. We could not be more proud of our lawmakers and Governor Scott for swiftly responding to their constituents and enacting laws to help ensure the public’s safety.”
STATEMENT FROM JOHN FEINBLATT, PRESIDENT OF EVERYTOWN FOR GUN SAFETY:
“This is huge. Vermonters have proven that a state with a centuries-old culture of gun ownership can also pass lifesaving gun laws. The political ground on gun safety is shifting, and Congress needs to shift with it and buck the NRA”
STATEMENT FROM SHANNON WATTS, FOUNDER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“After Parkland, Americans joined together to demand immediate action for gun safety. Vermont’s lawmakers rose to the occasion and put politics aside to pass legislation that will save lives. Lawmakers across the country should follow their example. This bill signing is a testament to the power of of this moment and the fact that Americans’ demands for safety are not going away.”