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Nicholas Naumkin

Saratoga Springs became the latest New York municipality to enact a firearm safe storage law when the City Council voted unanimously on April 5 to approve a local version of “Nicholas’s Law.”

The law–named for Nicholas Naumkin, the 12-year-old Saratoga County resident who was unintentionally shot and killed by a friend in 2010– requires guns to be safely stored when not in the owner’s immediate possession or control.

NYAGV is advocating on both the municipal and state-level for safe storage laws. The state-wide Nicholas’s Law was approved by the New York State Assembly in 2015 but has not been taken up by the Senate. (See below for information on how to advocate for a state-wide Nicholas’s Law.)

Saratoga Springs is now the seventh New York municipality to enact a safe storage law, joining Albany, New York City, Westchester County, Syracuse, Buffalo and Rochester.

Oxsana Naumkin, Nicholas's mother, addressing the Council.

Oxsana Naumkin, Nicholas’s mother, addressing the Council.

Nicholas’s mother, Oxsana Naumkin, said, “I would like to thank Saratoga Springs City Council for passing Nicholas’s Law today. It has been five and a half years since our son Nicholas was taken away from us. No parent should ever have to experience this kind of loss and that is why it is so important that we stand together to prevent these senseless tragedies from happening over and over again.”

Chris Mathiesen, Saratoga’s Commissioner of Public Safety, who introduced the legislation said, “Saratoga Springs has taken an important step to protect the safety of families and especially children in our community. By passing our local version of Nicholas’s Law we will increase awareness of the need to maintain the safe and secure storage of firearms and significantly reduce the possibility of another tragedy such as the one experienced by Nicholas’s family.”

Saratoga Commissioner of Public Safety Chris Mathiesen

Saratoga Commissioner of Public Safety Chris Mathiesen

Saratoga Springs Mayor Joanne Yepsen commented, “If Nicholas’s Law saves even one life,  it will help ensure other families won’t have to endure such a horrific tragedy.”

Leah Gunn Barrett, NYAGV Executive Director, said, “We call on Senate leader Flanagan to bring Nicholas’s Law to a vote before the current legislative session ends in June. Since 91% of New York voters support a statewide safe storage law, we’re hopeful that the Senate sides with protecting New York’s children, not the corporate gun lobby.”

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