The United States Senate has passed a gun safety bill, the most significant action against rising gun violence in the country.
What is the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act on gun violence?
- The bill was introduced with the aim “to make our communities safer”, and has been called the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act.
- The bipartisan bill focuses on firearms and improving medical care in the US.
- The bill will also release funds for educational institutions, to expand their mental health resources and make schools safer.
- The bill seeks to ensure strict background checks for gun buyers, especially minors. It states that if a firearm is being transferred to a person less than 21 years, the system should contact the criminal history repository or juvenile justice information system, the state custodian of mental health adjudication records, and the local law enforcement agency of the state in which the person resides.
- The bill also puts penalties on straw purchasing, which is buying a firearm on behalf of someone else. The penalty for straw purchasing, as stated in the bill, will be from 15 to 25 years of imprisonment.
The bill lacks strong resolutions that many Democrats and activists have been pushing for, including banning assault-type weapons, raising the minimum age to purchase firearms, and banning high-capacity magazine ammunition among others.