In response to the June 29 editorial about recently passed protective laws, “Progress on domestic violence,” I am calling on Kentucky legislators to enact laws that help protect domestic violence victims from being shot.
The research organization Everytown for Gun Safety reports, in an average month, 50 American women are shot to death by intimate partners, and many more are injured. The analysis shows that the presence of a gun makes it five times more likely that domestic abuse will turn into murder.
Yet, Kentucky does not prohibit individuals convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence, or those subject to domestic violence restraining orders, from purchasing or possessing firearms. Nor does it require these individuals to surrender their firearms. Worse still, Kentucky does not require a completed background check on every gun sale. Everytown research shows, however, that 46 percent fewer women are shot to death by intimate partners in states that do.
Let’s fix these loopholes. Let’s stop domestic violence offenders from easily obtaining guns. Let’s prohibit those charged with domestic abuse from possessing firearms.
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I’m urging Kentucky to save lives by joining the 23 states that have responsibly enacted gun laws to protect victims of domestic violence.