ST. PAUL, Minn. — Today, Minnesota’s Extreme Risk law goes into effect. The Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) law allows loved ones and law enforcement to petition a court to temporarily restrict access to firearms by those deemed to be at risk of harming themselves or others. ERPO laws are an essential tool to keep loved ones and communities safe. Everytown for Gun Safety and its grassroots network, Moms Demand Action issued the following statement as Minnesota’s life-saving ERPO law goes into effect today.
“Today is a monumental step forward for Minnesota as our Extreme Risk law goes into effect,” said Chad Kuyper, lead with the Minnesota chapter of Moms Demand Action. “This crucial legislation has demonstrated its effectiveness across the nation, saving lives by enabling intervention in potentially critical situations. As a new chapter in a safer Minnesota begins, the well-being of our communities takes precedence. Today’s implementation is not just a change in policy; it’s a commitment to a future where our state is safer, and lives are protected. Thank you to the lawmakers who championed this measure and prioritized Minnesotan safety.”
“Extreme risk laws are critical tools in comprehensive state gun violence prevention strategies, and we applaud the efforts underway to ensure that Minnesota’s new law is successfully implemented to ensure that all communities across the state have access to this lifesaving crisis intervention option,” said Chelsea Parsons, director of Implementation at Everytown for Gun Safety. “Enacting strong gun laws is not the end of the work to protect all communities from gun violence, but rather the beginning. We’re excited and ready to help chart the course for Minnesota and work hand-in-hand with leaders at the state and local level across the state to make sure Minnesota’s gun safety laws are working as designed to save lives.”
In May, following tireless advocacy from gun violence survivors, law enforcement, and Moms and Students Demand Action volunteers, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed a critical public safety omnibus bill into law, which included the creation of an Extreme Risk law to limit firearm access by individuals in crisis. When a person is in crisis and considering harming themselves or others, they often exhibit clear warning signs, which can be noticed by family, household members and law enforcement. Extreme Risk laws can empower these individuals to petition state courts to intervene and temporarily prevent someone in crisis from accessing firearms by issuing an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO).
A growing body of research demonstrates the potential for ERPO laws to prevent firearm violence, particularly firearm suicide, and multiple victim/mass shootings. Enacting strong gun laws is only the first step in protecting communities from gun violence. Effective implementation of extreme risk laws requires substantial coordination among a wide variety of stakeholders at the state and local level, development of shared protocol to ensure fair and efficient operation of the judicial process, and targeted training, outreach, and public education. The Everytown Implementation Center provides support and guidance to state and local leaders on the effective implementation of lifesaving gun laws. More information about the Implementation Center can be found here.