The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, March 26, 2015
Contact: Jonathan Hutson, firstname.lastname@example.org
New Brady Report Shows How Dangerous Loophole Allows Criminals to Buy Guns Easily Online Without Background Checks
Washington, D.C. – Oregon State Sen. Floyd Prozanski (D-Eugene) has just introduced a bill to expand Brady background checks on all gun sales, a move that would reduce gun violence and save lives by closing the dangerous “Internet loophole,” according to a special report from the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.
“This law would literally save lives by keeping guns out of the hands of convicted felons, fugitives and domestic abusers,” said Brady Campaign President Dan Gross. “It is supported by the overwhelming majority of Oregon voters and it would do nothing to impede the average law-abiding citizen from buying and owning guns. It should be about as much as of a no-brainer as you could ever imagine. Yet the corporate gun lobby remains hell bent on defeating it by whatever means possible. That’s why it is essential that every Oregon voter contact his or her state legislators and hold them accountable to put the safety of Oregon citizens ahead of the interests of the corporate gun lobby.”
States with expanded Brady background checks see 46% fewer women murdered with guns by intimate partners; 48% fewer law enforced officers killed by guns; and 48% fewer gun-related suicides, according to a recent report by Everytown for Gun Safety.
The new report highlights the success of Brady background checks in preventing dangerous people from getting guns. In 2000, Oregon’s citizens took an initial step to expand background checks by overwhelmingly passing Measure 5, which requires a Brady background check for guns sold at gun shows, by a margin of 62 percent to 38 percent.
In 2013, Brady background checks blocked 2,215 prohibited gun purchasers in Oregon from buying guns. This translates to an estimated six attempted purchases by dangerous people in Oregon blocked each day.
Nationally, Brady background checks have blocked more than 2.4 million purchases to felons, domestic abusers, fugitives, and the severely mentally ill since the Brady Law went into effect in 1994. This translates to an estimated 358 prohibited purchases blocked every day to people who are not legally allowed to own guns.
In today’s gun marketplace, not all sales take place through a gun store or a gun show. Thousands of gun sales are happening at online marketplaces, such as Armslist.com, where a Brady background check is not required for purchases from unlicensed dealers. These unchecked sales help arm felons, domestic abusers, and other dangerous people who would not be able to pass a background check.
Many states have closed the dangerous, gaping loopholes which allow criminals and dangerous people to purchase guns without background checks at gun shows and online. Since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012, five states – Colorado, Connecticut, New York, Delaware, and Washington – have acted where Congress failed to expand background checks on gun sales. If Oregon passes legislation to close the “Internet loophole,” it would join those five states, and California and Rhode Island, to become the eighth state with expanded Brady background checks on all gun sales.
Every year, gun violence kills more than 400 Oregonians. From 2004 to 2013, more than 4,000 people in Oregon died due to gun violence. This means that, on average, somebody is killed in Oregon with a gun every 21 hours.
According to the Oregon Health Authority and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, 82 percent of gun deaths in Oregon are suicides, 54 percent of all homicides in Oregon involve a gun, and nearly 25 percent of all Oregon firearm homicides involve intimate partner violence.
Oregonians overwhelmingly support expanding Brady background checks to all gun sales. A January 2015 poll by Americans for Responsible Solutions showed that 87 percent of Oregon voters, and 83 percent of gun owners, support a Brady background check for every gun purchase.
“The Oregon state legislature has a tremendous opportunity to demonstrate that it is in lockstep with the public it was elected to represent, to keep guns out of the hands of criminals, domestic abusers, and the dangerously mentally ill, and to make Oregon a significantly safer place for all of its citizens,” added Gross.
To read the full report, visit www.bradycampaign.org/sites/default/files/Brady-Oregon-report.pdf
The mission of the Brady organization is to create a safer America for all of us that will lead to a dramatic reduction in gun deaths and injuries. For more insight on gun violence prevention, follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BradyBuzz.