At Amnesty International, we have focused our work on national gun reform and preventing gun violence by campaigning for regulations on the use and possession of firearms. State laws also vary regarding the carrying of concealed weapons by people who have obtained a license from another state. Stricter state laws restrict the carrying of concealed weapons to people who have obtained a permit from that state. Other states restrict transportation to people with permits from states that have similar requirements for their permits. States with weaker laws allow transportation by persons licensed by any state that recognizes that state’s license, or by persons licensed by any state.
Participants praised the importance of early prevention at the family level and suggested that parents should be helped to access the social services needed to strengthen protective factors, build resilience, help their children regulate their emotions, develop coping skills and provide physical and psychological safety. Whether or not your state requires hidden carrying training, all firearm owners must learn how to carry weapons legally, safely and responsibly. That is why Amnesty International calls on states to comply with their obligations to implement and implement strict laws and regulations to prevent gun violence. States also have a duty to adopt measures that they can use to intervene at the community level to reduce and prevent armed violence in people’s daily lives.
Failure by a State to exercise sufficient control over the possession and use of firearms in the face of sustained armed force may amount to a violation of its obligations under international human rights law. Restrictions are imposed on places where the carrying of concealed weapons is permitted, prohibiting the carrying of concealed weapons in sensitive areas such as schools, courts, hospitals, mental health institutions and public sporting events. Guns carried in public pose a danger to public safety, and lax hidden carrying laws increase the risk of violent clashes. We will not rest until every state has strong gun safety laws and every community is free from the fear of gun violence.
Gun violence should be viewed as a public health problem, not a political problem, an epidemic that needs to be addressed with evidence-based research and strategies that can reduce morbidity and mortality. These doctors, who witness the significant impact that gun-related violence has on the health of their patients, families and communities, have the power to help improve the safety and well-being of those groups. Although 24 states do not require a person to obtain a license to carry concealed weapons in public, a person may choose to obtain a permit for certain other purposes, including carrying concealed weapons across state lines. States must require a person to complete safety training before purchasing a gun or carrying a gun in public.
While the lack of research makes it difficult to develop evidence-based strategies to prevent mass shootings, even small changes, such as banning modification devices, such as crash stocks and high-capacity chargers, can reduce the number of injuries and deaths. In the wake of the deadly shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas School in Parkland, Florida, on February 14, 2018, there is an understandable focus on school safety. We strongly support the broad commitment of community members, including youth and other survivors of gun violence, policymakers and others, to insist that schools are safe. We must also insist on that same level of safety for our places of worship, shopping malls, cinemas, concert halls, nightclubs, workplaces, neighbourhoods and homes. Part of our healing must be the belief that we will do everything in our power to prevent these tragedies in a country that is still facing a pandemic of gun violence.
As a parent, you may not realize what a serious risk a gun at home is, especially for children. And the reality is that having firearms in the home increases the risk of unintentional shootings, suicide and murder. In addition, 26 states and the District of Columbia require applicants for concealed carrying permits to prove that they have received some form of firearms training, either in a formal course or through another environment, such as through gun safety training military service. See our analysis of hidden carrying laws for more information on the variation in the state’s implementation of hidden carrying laws. Firearm training may include topics such as the operation of firearms and how to handle the weapon safely. It can include the science and dynamics of a firearm, safety procedures for cleaning and maintenance, laws and regulations, and best practices for keeping guns away from children and others.
Parents tend to be more receptive when discussing firearms in the same way as poisons and household medications, as dangers that should be kept away from children. Kimberly J. Lombard, injury prevention coordinator at the trauma center on campus at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., agrees that gun safety can be an uncomfortable topic for doctors, but that many parents may appreciate it if handled appropriately. In addition, first responders are exceptionally qualified to have such conversations, and their words are likely to carry more weight, as they actually see and treat gun injuries. The most important thing, Lombard says, is to have the conversation before something happens, not after it. Gun homicide was the leading cause of death among black men and boys in 2017, and they were more than 10 times more likely to die from gun homicide than white men and boys in the same age group. Failure to address systemic discrimination; not to keep firearms out of the hands of those most likely to misuse them; and the lack of investment in gun violence prevention programmes is contributing to this crisis.