Congress must close the ‘boyfriend loophole’

In any eight hour period—while you are at work, sleeping, catching up with friends—nearly 10, individuals are physically abused by intimate partners. Every minute , an average of 20 individuals—most of them women—suffer physical abuse at the hands of their partners. While most of these acts of violence are not lethal, intimate partner violence can escalate quickly. And when a gun is involved, a dangerous domestic violence situation can easily become deadly. More than half of all women murdered in the United States are killed by an intimate partner with a gun , and the chance of being murdered by an abusive partner increases five-fold when there is a gun in the home. Even when the weapon is not discharged, abusers often use the mere presence of a gun to coerce, threaten and terrorize their victims, inflicting enormous psychological damage. The intersection of guns and domestic violence poses a serious threat to American women, but most of the time, these tragedies happen behind closed doors. Such violence is typically not considered newsworthy unless it spills into a public place—a school, a workplace, a community gathering. Even when domestic violence does make headlines, policymakers and citizens often lament these tragedies while explicitly or implicitly and wrongfully blaming the victim for her own death.

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About every 16 hours, a woman is shot and killed by a former or current partner. One out of every three women murdered in was killed by an intimate partner with a gun. Nearly three out of four of all child and teen mass shooting deaths in the past 10 years resulted from incidents connected to intimate partner or family violence. Brady’s report explores these tragic statistics and the stories behind them, as well as ways to save lives moving forward. While the federal Brady Background Check system bars people convicted of domestic violence crimes or who are subject to restraining orders for certain types of domestic violence from purchasing guns, one in five guns today are sold without a background check — whether online, at gun shows, or in other private sales.

“This means closing the senseless loopholes that allow abusers with violence survivors who have been abused by their dating partners.

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Sheldon Whitehouse D-R. The senator noted that current law prohibits domestic abusers from possessing guns only if they are married or were married to the victim; if they lived with the victim; or if they have a child with the victim. But dating partners who have been convicted of domestic violence are not covered by current law, and that’s one of the changes under consideration. Gabby Giffords R-Ariz. Violence against women comes in all forms, and there is a clear and deadly connection between domestic violence and gun violence.

The hearing included a call for universal background checks from the sister of a woman who was shot to death by her estranged husband, after he purchased a pistol from an online gun-trading site.

The measure closes the so-called boyfriend loophole by barring those convicted of abusing, assaulting or stalking a dating partner or those.

Senator Richard Blumenthal D-CT and 18 of their colleagues in introducing bicameral legislation to protect domestic violence survivors from gun violence. The Lori Jackson Domestic Violence Survivor Protection Act would close dangerous loopholes in federal law that allow domestic abusers to legally obtain weapons. Congress must do its part to extend vital protections for survivors of domestic violence and keep guns out of the hands of known abusers.

This legislation would restrict those under temporary restraining order from purchasing or possessing a firearm, and would extend protections to domestic violence survivors who have been abused by their dating partners. Current federal law protects domestic violence survivors from gun violence by preventing their abusers from purchasing or possessing a firearm — but only once the court has issued a permanent restraining order.

This leaves survivors unprotected exactly when they are in the most danger: when a domestic abuser first learns his or her victim has left and only a temporary restraining order is in place. However, there are many survivors of dating violence who were never married, do not live with their abuser, and have no children. This legislation is named in memory of Lori Jackson, an Oxford, Connecticut mother of two who was tragically shot and killed by her estranged husband, who had legally obtained a handgun even though he was subject to a temporary restraining order.

The full text of the Senate legislation can be found here and the one pager can be found here. Subscribe to our Podcast and listen to today’s headlines. Print Version Submit a News Tip. Share this story with your friends and family. We want to hear from you.

What Is ‘Boyfriend Loophole’ HPD Chief Wants Lawmakers To Close

The original law expired in February, and the House will vote on the new legislation this week. Currently, people convicted of domestic abuse are only prohibited from possessing guns if they live with the victim, have a child with them, are a parent or guardian, or they are, or were once, married to them. This leaves out many cases of intimate partner violence, and the VAWA reauthorization would expand this to include dating partners, stalkers, and former partners.

Lindsay Nichols, federal policy director at the Giffords Law Center, which provides legal assistance to lawmakers, activists, and government attorneys for gun control efforts, told ThinkProgress that the provisions recognizing stalkers are an important addition to this law. The bill is sponsored by Reps. This legislation allows law enforcement to confiscate firearms from abusers by providing a mechanism through which to enforce the prohibition on gun possession.

What is the “boyfriend loophole?” Houston’s police chief wants lawmakers to prevent abusive dating partners from buying guns. r/domesticgunviolence.

A major piece of legislation remains unresolved as U. Joni Ernst. The Violence Against Women Act has lapsed and must be re-authorized in order to keep funds flowing to domestic violence organizations and those who investigate and prosecute violent crimes against women. Gebhart was married to her abuser, an important distinction when discussing how gun laws affect Americans differently depending on whether they are married to their partner, living together or in a dating relationship.

A billion dollars of funding that should go out to our shelters, to our hotlines, to those that are providing the support and resources to our families in their time of need. The proposal does not include new provisions for the LGBTQ community or restrictions on gun ownership for abusive partners, and rolls back protections for Native American women, which are part of the House bill. There were 33 Republican votes for the Democratic bill in the House.

Despite the partisan divide that often emerges when discussing gun laws, Gebhart stressed the importance of talking about the issues and finding common ground. Your email address will not be published.

Debate over ‘boyfriend loophole’ takes back seat to impeachment, Iran conflict

On Oct. He then took his own life with the same rifle. Michigan has made progress, but there is much more to do to protect victims of domestic violence. Under federal law, people convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor cannot purchase or possess a firearm.

Closing the boyfriend loophole is crucial considering how many women are abused and murdered by dating partners in the U.S., and.

Bob Casey of Pennsylvania wants Congress to reauthorize a lapsed law that helps victims of domestic abuse over objections from the National Rifle Association that an added provision could deprive the rights of gun owners. Under existing federal law, such protections for domestic violence victims apply only if the abuser was or is married to the victim. The additional provision bars convicted stalkers who are current or former dating partners from owning firearms.

The NRA fears the provision will be applied too broadly and could unfairly strip people of their right to own a firearm. Speaking at the University of Pennsylvania with a panel of advocates Friday, Casey said that concern is overblown. Women are more than twice as likely to be shot and killed by a male partner than injured by a stranger, according to Susan Sorenson, a University of Pennsylvania professor whose research focuses on firearms and violence against women.

Sorenson, who was among the panelists who spoke with Casey, said ending the loophole for dating partners is a crucial step toward protecting women, who also die from gun violence at rates higher than other developed countries. The boyfriend loophole measure was recently added to the Violence Against Women Act, a law enacted in that lapsed in February. The new version passed in the Democratic-held House earlier this month and has moved to the Republican-controlled Senate.

Casey would not say whether he would still support the bill if the boyfriend loophole were not addressed in the final version. NRA has history of advising gun-rights groups outside U. The recent revelation that NRA representatives had met with Australian politicians to discuss talking points after a mass shooting generated outrage from politicians. House passes gun-restricting domestic violence bill. The bill was initially expected to pass last June, before the legislature wrapped up for the summer.

Guns and Violence Against Women

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Further, the current definition of “intimate partner” used to prohibit violence survivors who have been abused by their dating partners.

Jump to navigation. Please note: Entries within this blog may contain references to instances of domestic abuse, dating abuse, sexual assault, abuse or harassment. At all times, Break the Cycle encourages readers to take whatever precautions necessary to protect themselves emotionally and psychologically. Sometimes boundaries also shift and change as a relationship progresses, which is okay as long as you both agree to discuss the shift honestly and you both feel good about the changes.

Discussing your wants and needs early in a new relationship helps set the stage for healthy conversations when boundaries start to shift. Communicating with a new dating partner is one of the most exciting experiences of a new relationship. Texting, calling, emailing, or messaging on social media with this new person can happen more frequently.

Nonetheless, both partners should talk about what they want their digital relationship to look like. Are you comfortable with them following your friends? What are the expectations for returning texts? Be aware of excessive calling or texting, demanding to share passwords, or reading your incoming text messages without permission.

Beyond Bullet Wounds: Guns in the Hands of Domestic Abusers

But evidence shows that dating partners are actually more likely to abuse their partners than spouses. As the letter notes, the Lautenberg Amendment prohibits persons convicted of specific domestic violence crimes from purchasing or possessing firearms. This law, however, does not cover dating partners. We know that firearms play a significant role in intimate partner homicides and we know that current and former dating partners are more likely to be offenders than spouses.

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Acevedo Slams Texas GOP For Opposing ‘Boyfriend Loophole’ Law After Officer Dies On Domestic Call

Every month, an average of 52 women are shot and killed by an intimate partner. Federal Bureau of Investigation. In the United States, more than one in three women report experiencing abuse from a partner in their lifetime. November Intimate partner violence IPV is a serious public health problem that affects millions of American women, with far-reaching impacts not only for individual victims, but also for their families, their communities, and our economy.

‘Boyfriend Loophole’: What To Know – Houston, TX – The so-called police chief wants lawmakers to prevent abusive dating partners from.

Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn. You, in fact, as a senator tried to get it covered and Mitch McConnell is holding it up on his desk right now. In short, Biden did write the legislation that became the Violence Against Women Act, one of his most prominent achievements. The law sets out services and specific protections for victims of domestic violence. But that effort, opposed by the National Rifle Association, has been hung up in the Senate.

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Although a high percentage of women murdered by a current or former intimate partner experienced stalking in the year preceding the murder, federal law allows convicted stalkers to possess and buy firearms. Moreover, though the law prohibits convicted domestic abusers from accessing firearms, it does not apply to dating partners. Loopholes also allow domestic abusers to access firearms.

The only thing (is) that that boyfriend loophole was not covered, I couldn’t of a common child — in other words, boyfriends or dating partners.

This saves the lives of women and encourages responsible gun ownership. VAWA19 pic. It’s absolutely absurd and obscene that gun lobbyists write our nation’s laws, especially those protecting women. You can’t shout down a woman! Skip navigation! Story from Politics. The U. House of Representatives voted to renew the Violence Against Women Act VAWA on Thursday, adding a new provision that closes the “boyfriend loophole” by extending existing gun restrictions to include current and former dating partners convicted of abuse or stalking charges.

The vote was to , with 33 Republicans approving the measure. Right now, the law only prohibits firearm purchases for people who are “married to, lived with, or have a child with the victim” and who have been convicted of an abuse felony or are under a restraining order. This provision would extend the law to unmarried partners and misdemeanor convictions of domestic abuse and stalking.

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