NEW “RED FLAG” LAW HAILED BY NEW YORK LEGISLATORS AND GUN CONTROL ADVOCATES

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[Gun Control]
The ERPO bill (S2451/A2689) creates a new type of court-issued order of protection that temporarily prohibits individuals from purchasing or possessing guns if a family or household member, District Attorney, law enforcement officer, or school administrator petitions a court and the court finds that an individual is likely to engage in conduct that would harm themselves or others.
Photo: Zameena Mejia\NY State Senator Brian Kavanagh

New York lawmakers, like State Senator Brian Kavanagh, above, along with other legal officials, and gun-control advocates, are all hailing new "Red Flag" law.

Senators Brian Kavanagh and Brad Hoylman, Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon, the authors of New York’s new Extreme Risk Protection Order law (ERPO, also known as the “Red Flag” law), announced that, after years of advocacy, the law will go into effect across the state on Saturday, August 24.

The new law gives New Yorkers an important new way to prevent gun violence when there’s evidence that someone is likely to harm themselves or others.

The lawmakers were joined by Manhattan DA Cy Vance, Jr., Co-Chair of the national organization Prosecutors Against Gun Violence, Bronx DA Darcel Clark, other District Attorneys’ offices, Senator Kevin Parker and Assemblymember Deborah Glick, Rebecca Fischer of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence, school attorneys, doctors, mental health advocates, Giffords, Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action, the Brady Campaign, and other legislators. In addition, Orange County District Attorney David Hoovler, President of the District Attorneys Association of New York, which includes the DAs of all 62 counties in the state, as well as the heads of the associations composed respectively of the state’s sheriffs, school boards, and school superintendents all made statements (below) in support of effective implementation of ERPO.

The ERPO bill (S2451/A2689) creates a new type of court-issued order of protection that temporarily prohibits individuals from purchasing or possessing guns if a family or household member, District Attorney, law enforcement officer, or school administrator petitions a court and the court finds that an individual is likely to engage in conduct that would harm themselves or others. Seventeen states and the District of Columbia have adopted ERPO laws, and there is growing evidence that they can be effective at preventing suicides, mass shootings, and other instances of gun violence.

Experience in other jurisdictions suggests that effective implementation of ERPO laws depends substantially on the readiness of the courts and the officials who are authorized to seek the orders, as well as public awareness. The officials at the press conference discussed the preparations of the courts in New York and their respective agencies and organizations.

Senator Kavanagh also announced the creation of a task force that will include the Office of Court Administration, representatives of the State’s executive and legislative branches, the DAs, the school attorneys, gun violence prevention experts, and those engaged in public awareness efforts in New York, all of whom will work together to share best practices, ensure the law is properly implemented, and monitor the results.

For more information on ERPOs in New York, and how to ask for one, please visit www.nycourts.gov/CourtHelp/Safety/extremeRisk.shtml.

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