MISSOULA, Mont. – Everytown for Gun Safety and the Montana chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today released the following statement applauding the introduction of a Missoula city ordinance which would require criminal background checks on all gun sales. Currently in Montana, felons, domestic abusers and other dangerous people can buy guns from unlicensed sellers — including at gun shows and online — anonymously and with no questions asked, due to a loophole in state and federal law that requires criminal background checks only for guns sold by licensed dealers. The ordinance introducedlast night by City Councilman Bryan von Lossberg, City Council President Marilyn Marler and City Councilwoman Emily Bentley, would close that loophole by requiring background checks for all gun sales within the city limits of Missoula.
STATEMENT FROM HEIDI KENDALL, VOLUNTEER WITH THE MONTANA CHAPTER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“I am thankful for the leadership and commitment to public safety demonstrated by Councilman Bryan von Lossberg with the support of Mayor Engen, City Council President Marilyn Marler and Councilwoman Emily Bentley. The goal of this background check ordinance is to keep our families and our community safe by doing more to keep guns out of dangerous hands. Right now, we have a deadly loophole in Montana law that makes it easy for criminals, domestic abusers and other dangerous people to buy guns from unlicensed sellers online and at gun shows with no background check and no questions asked. I urge our City Council to stand on the side of safety for our children and our community by supporting this common-sense measure to help save lives.”
Background checks are quick and easy – in fact, there are more than 50 gun dealers in Missoula. And, every person in Missoula lives within 10 miles of a gun dealer, making it simple and convenient for buyers and sellers to meet at a gun dealer to run the check.
In addition, background checks are proven to help prevent crime and save lives. In states with background checks on all handgun sales, 46 percent fewer women are killed by intimate partners, there are 48 percent fewer gun suicides, and 48 percent fewer law enforcement officers are killed with handguns.