The California chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety, released the following statement after San Francisco Board of Supervisor Catherine Stefani, former Moms Demand Action volunteer, introduced legislation to build on the progress at the state level by regulating ghost guns — untraceable, do-it-yourself firearms made from parts available without a background check. Recent reports have stated that 41 percent of ATF’s cases in Los Angeles involved a ghost gun.
“Every day, I am reminded by how dangerous and deadly ghost guns are,” said Mia Tretta, a volunteer leader with Students Demand Action in California and a gun violence survivor who was shot and wounded by a ghost gun during a shooting at Saugus High School. “Stopping the spread of ghost guns in California communities should be a top priority for our cities. I’m thankful — but not at all surprised — that former Moms Demand Action volunteer Supervisor Catherine Stefani is leading the charge.”
When it comes to gun violence, the rise of ghost guns is one the fastest-growing gun safety problems in recent years. On Friday, President Joe Biden’s Department of Justice, through the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), issued a proposed rule to stop the proliferation of deadly, untraceable ghost guns –– a move that Everytown first called for from the Biden Administration in December 2020. The proposed rule will strengthen the regulation over frames, receivers, and ghost gun “kits”, therefore requiring that the core parts for ghost guns be sold with a serial number and a background check.
In a 2019 interview with CBS’s 60 Minutes, the Los Angeles County Sheriff reported that, over the last year, the number of ghost gun recoveries turning up in law enforcement investigations has increased by 50%. In 2019, ATF officials estimated that approximately 10,000 ghost guns were recovered across the country by law enforcement.
More information about ghost guns is available here. Additional information on gun violence in California is available here, and Everytown’s Gun Law Navigator — which shows how California’s gun laws compare to those of other states — is available here.