Senator Durbin greeting the family of Trayvon Martin at the October 29 hearing about "Stand Your Ground" laws.

Senator Durbin greeting the family of Trayvon Martin at the October 29 hearing about “Stand Your Ground” laws.

New Yorkers Against Gun Violence submitted written testimony to the U.S. Senate hearings October 29 on the impact of “Stand Your Ground” laws, also known as “Shoot First” laws.

“We’re pleased that Senator Durbin is highlighting this important issue, and hope these hearings will ensure the Senate’s continued opposition to federal concealed carry (CCW) reciprocity laws,” said Leah Gunn Barrett, NYAGV Executive Director. “These laws are especially dangerous when they’re coupled with weak laws governing the carrying of concealed weapons in public,” she added.

Although New York City is the safest large city in the nation, 90% of crime guns recovered in New York City come from other states, mainly from those with weak gun safety laws. A federal concealed carry reciprocity law would allow gun owners with conceal carry permits from states with weak gun laws to legally use guns in New York.

“Such a dangerous law could, for example, permit a Floridian to enter busy Times Square not only with a gun at his hip, but with an attitude that if he feels afraid—even if his fear is based on prejudice or bias—then he will be justified to shoot first,” added Barrett.

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Additional information on “Stand-your-ground”/”Shoot-first” laws: