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Colorado Chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action Applaud The Colorado Legislature for Passing Critical Gun Safety Bill to Set Gun Dealer Licensing Standards; the Fourth Gun Safety Bill They Have Passed This Session

May 8, 2024

DENVER — The Colorado chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, released the following statements applauding the Colorado legislature for passing a critical gun safety bill instituting a state dealer permitting system. House Bill 24-1353 would require retail firearm dealers to obtain a state permit to sell firearms in Colorado. Additionally, this bill will require firearm dealers and employees to undergo background checks, receive training, and implement security measures. This is the fourth gun safety bill Colorado has passed during the 2024 legislative session.

“Too many families across Colorado continue to deal with the toll of gun violence, which is often a result of gun crimes. The reality is that illegal guns don’t start out that way, and gun dealers play a crucial role in stopping the flow of guns from legal to illegal markets,” said Kelly Murphy, a volunteer with the Colorado chapter of Moms Demand Action. “While most firearms are produced by licensed manufacturers and shipped to licensed dealers, some are very quickly diverted to traffickers, criminals, and others prohibited from possessing firearms. It is the responsibility of those selling firearms to stop guns from being diverted to illegal markets and falling into the wrong hands. We are excited these standards will hopefully soon be the law of the land in our state, and appreciate the Colorado legislature for continuing to champion gun violence prevention legislation.” 

“When gun dealers facilitate illegal firearm sales or engage in reckless business practices, they’re contributing to America’s gun violence crisis – the leading cause of death for my generation,” said Norah Krause, a volunteer leader with the Denver East Students Demand Action chapter. “Stronger regulations for gun dealers is a matter of public safety and today’s action by our lawmakers reinforces the importance of safe business practices within the gun industry. While today is a major win,  it also marks the last day of session in Colorado and students around the state are calling on our leaders to prioritize getting additional gun violence prevention bills over the finish line.” 

Implementing a state firearms dealer permitting system would help stem the flow of guns into the illegal market. Additionally, this bill is necessary to fill key gaps in federal law regulating gun dealers, including instituting required safety education and training for gun dealers, requiring the adoption of basic security measures to guard against straw purchases and theft, and completing more frequent periodic inspections to ensure compliance with state and federal laws. Ultimately, this would help prevent firearm trafficking in Colorado.

Colorado continues to be a leader in gun violence prevention. Colorado ranks 11th in gun law strength in the nation. Already this session, the Colorado legislature has passed:

  • Senate Bill 24-003, legislation to support investigations by the Colorado Bureau of Investigations of instances where prohibited persons attempt to purchase firearms.
  • House Bill 24-1174, legislation to expand training requirements for permits to carry concealed handguns in Colorado.This bill would help foster responsible gun ownership by requiring concealed carry permit holders to undergo more extensive training, and also awaits signing by Governor Jared Polis.
  • Senate Bill SB24-131, legislation to prohibit the carrying of firearms in sensitive spaces, including polling places and all schools, passed a second reading on the House floor. The bill is also waiting on Governor Polis’ desk to be signed into law.
  •  SB24-066, legislation to require credit card companies and other financial institutions that process payments to develop a code specifically for the purchase of firearms and related products. The bill was signed into law by Governor Jared Polis last week.

In the last week of the 2024 Colorado legislative session, lawmakers are also considering House Bill 24-1348, legislation to require secure storage of firearms in cars.

In an average year, 930 people die and 466 are wounded by guns in Colorado. Guns are the leading cause of death among children and teens in Colorado, and an average of 79 children and teens die by guns every year, of which 51% are suicides and 45% are homicides. Gun violence in Colorado costs $2,039 per resident each year. Gun deaths and injuries cost Colorado $11.7 billion each year, of which $156.1 million is paid by taxpayers. 

More information about gun violence in Colorado is available here.

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