The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) is deeply disappointed by yesterday's vote in the House of Representatives to make it easier for domestic abusers to stalk their victims across state lines. H.R.38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 (CCR), undermines states' ability to regulate who can carry loaded, concealed weapons within their borders. This legislation forces states to recognize all out-of-state concealed carry permits, including from states that have weaker licensing standards, such as those that grant permits to dating abusers and stalkers; residents from the twelve states that do not require permits to carry concealed weapons simply need to prove their residency in the permitless states. Among other provisions, the bill also allows abusers who are ineligible for permits in their own states to circumvent their state laws by obtaining permits from other states and allows permittees to sue law enforcement officers who attempt to verify the validity of their permits. H.R.38, simply put, endangers the lives of victims, survivors, their children, law enforcement, and their communities
Says Executive Director Ruth Glenn, "I am profoundly disturbed by the passage of H.R.38. 231 Members of Congress chose to arm abusers and abandon victims and survivors. Make no mistake about it - despite claims to the contrary, this bill makes our communities less safe. We believe no victim should ever live in fear of an abuser with a gun. Apparently, 231 Members of Congress disagree with us."
NCADV thanks all of the passionate advocates who contacted their Members of Congress in advance of this vote. Although the bill passed, the vote count was, in some ways, a victory. In 2013, a similar bill passed the house by a margin of 118 votes; H.R.38 passed by only 33 votes, an 85-vote difference. Continued mobilization can ensure CCR fails in the Senate and does not become the law of the land.