“Moms and families across Washington are safer thanks to the unprecedented unanimous vote on HB 1840,” said Jocelyn Wood, advocacy lead for Washington chapter of Moms Demand Action. “We are grateful to our courageous elected officials for doing the right thing.”
HB 1840 is a bipartisan bill that will help save women’s lives and protect families by keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers. The bill is backed by domestic abuse survivors, law enforcement, gun violence prevention advocates, and the National Rifle Association.
Rory Spence Graves, whose mother was shot by her former husband said, “I went to Olympia with Courtney Weaver, a fellow survivor of gun violence and domestic violence. We watched this bill pass with tears in our eyes. It has taken too many years to get this bill passed. But now, my mother’s shooter can no longer own guns while she has a protection order, and neither can other domestic violence perpetrators. This new legislation will help protect so many women and families across our state.”
Women experiencing domestic violence are five times more likely to be murdered if their abuser owns a firearm. Two-thirds of women who are murdered by their current or former intimate partners are killed with guns. Domestic violence offenders with firearms are also responsible for 14 percent of police officer deaths in the line-of-duty, and have been linked to more than half of the mass shootings committed in the U.S. from 2009 to 2013.
HB 1840 protects ALL Washingtonians by keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers who have a protective order filed against them. The bill also directs law enforcement agencies to enact policies and protocols that address firearm removal, seizure, storage, and return of firearms.
“This bill will protect women, children, police officers and all Washingtonians, and is a valuable tool for law enforcement,” says Kate Beck, chapter leader for the Washington chapter of Moms Demand Action. “Our Washington members worked hard to support the domestic violence community by providing testimony and talking to legislators to help pass this bill. This is a great step for our state.”