DOVER, Del. – The Delaware chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, released the following statement after the House failed to pass a purchase to permit bill before they adjourned late Friday night. New House Speaker Valerie Longhurst, along with Governor Carney have reportedly committed to moving the legislation in January. While this critical legislation was left on the table once again, the session was not without wins for gun safety – the State Senate passed three bills to address firearms in sensitive places and secure storage in cars on the last night of session.
“We are disappointed that the House once again could not unite to pass critical legislation like permit to purchase before adjourning for this year’s session,” said Mara Gorman, a volunteer with the Delaware chapter of Moms Demand Action. “As we look ahead to January, this is not where we stop, but get louder. We will continue to advocate for lawmakers to pass this life-saving legislation as we work to keep communities across Delaware safe from gun violence. We are encouraged to hear that the new Speaker and Governor have committed to prioritizing this legislation when the legislature reconvenes in 2024, and look forward to working with them to get this done.”
During the first year of the current Delaware legislative session, Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers were pleased to see the Delaware General Assembly pass HB201 and HB202 — legislation to keep guns out of schools and polling places on election day. The lead sponsor of HB202 is Delaware State Representative Cyndie Romer, a former Moms Demand Action volunteer, and the lead sponsor for HB201 is former Speaker of the Delaware House Peter Schwartzkopf. HB 201 and 202 are now headed to Governor Carney’s desk for his signature. HB155, which is sponsored by Representative Krista Griffith and regulates secure storage in cars, also passed the Senate Friday, but was amended and will need to return to the House when the legislature reconvenes in January.
In an average year in Delaware, 123 people die by guns and 51 percent of gun deaths are by firearm homicide. Gun violence costs Delaware $1.4 billion each year, of which $44.4 million is paid by taxpayers. More information on gun violence in Delaware is available here.