Last week, the House Appropriations Committee voted to advance the Commerce, Justice, and Science (CJS) Appropriations Fiscal Year 2022 funding bill which includes $40 million for state-based Extreme Risk Protection Order laws, as well as gun licensing laws, under the Office of Justice Programs (OJP).
This funding would support the development of the infrastructure states need to enact Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs), sometimes called “Red Flag” laws. These laws empower family members and law enforcement to prevent gun violence and gun-related suicides by petitioning a court to temporarily separate someone who may be in crisis from their firearms.
“Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs) are powerful tools for saving lives. This funding will strengthen these critical gun safety laws,” said Mark Barden, co-founder and managing director of Sandy Hook Promise and father of Daniel, who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. “We thank the Biden administration and members of the House Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations Subcommittee and full House Appropriations Committee for including funding for the implementation of ERPOs in the FY22 appropriations bill.”
“Red Flag laws like the one we have in Maryland help us act on the warning signs before a shooting takes place, saving lives and relieving a burden on our over-taxed law enforcement,” said Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger. “They are one more tool in the toolbelt as we combat the scourge of gun violence across America. As an Appropriator, I am proud to have helped champion this new and critical funding to help implement these commonsense laws in more communities and I urge my colleagues to support it on the House floor.”
“Extreme Risk Protection Orders are life-saving policies. This funding is essential for states to ensure that law enforcement, courts, and the general public have the ability to use the tool effectively and equitably. The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence strongly encourages making funding available to protect lives across the country. We thank the committee for advancing funding to support this vital policy,” said Josh Horwitz, Executive Director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence.
“From Parkland to Sandy Hook to Las Vegas, gun violence has torn apart families and communities across the United States. With each mass shooting, gun violence cuts deeper into our sense of peace, safety, and decency, and we are reminded of the need for real change,” said Rep. Charlie Crist. “I was proud to use my position on the House Appropriations Committee to secure $40 million for states to implement common sense gun violence prevention laws so we can do a better job keeping families and children safe from senseless violence.”
Support for ERPOs has increased significantly since the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School but, to date, Congress has yet to hold a formal vote on any related bill. Today, 19 states and the District of Columbia have enacted Extreme Risk Protection legislation.
The FY22 House CJS appropriations bill now awaits consideration by the House of Representatives.
About the Sandy Hook Promise Action Fund
Sandy Hook Promise Action Fund is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization committed to protecting all children from gun violence in schools, homes, and communities. The SHP Action Fund champions a holistic policy platform that promotes gun safety, youth mental health, and violence prevention education. The organization works at the state and federal level to pass nonpartisan legislation through inclusive partnerships, diverse grassroots education, and community mobilization. It is part of Sandy Hook Promise, founded and led by several family members whose loved ones were killed in the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012.
Aimee Thunberg | [email protected] | 646.761.5579