Ensuring Social Justice
Gun Safety

Support measures to increase public safety and reduce suicides.

Issue Team Chair: Pat Griffith, pgriffith@lwvwa.org(206) 285-2452
 DOWNLOAD the Gun Safety Issue Paper
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Right Now in Gun Safety

(Interested in the 2020 Session Recap? Click Here)

Hearings have not yet been scheduled on gun-related bills this week, but are anticipated the following week. Newly submitted bills are shown below.

Bills the League Supports

SB 5038 Washington communities, especially those in rural areas, are experiencing increased confrontations by firearms carrying groups at public rallies and demonstrations. Some Whidbey Island voters faces open carrying militia types when dropping off their ballots at a drop box. And just this week protesters with firearms forced their way into the Governor’s Mansion lawn.

Groups advocating open carrying firearms in public settings defend this as a Second Amendment right. Families and individual participants at demonstrations express feeling fear and intimidation at the sight of openly carried firearms. Local law enforcement is often reluctant to intervene due to Washington law that requires an overt threat in order to respond to a perceived threat.

Due to the potential threat to public safety and to the public’s right to free speech and assembly, SB5038 addresses these concerns. 5038 would prohibit weapons—not just firearms—from any demonstration at a public location and from the state Capitol grounds. Violation would be a gross misdemeanor."

SB 1164 Addressing firearm safety measures to increase public safety. This is the third year this issue will be introduced as an Attorney General Request. Despite high public approval, this bill has not received a floor vote the past two years though it has passed out of committee. Bill is different from last year due to 9th Circuit court decision regarding California law. Bill prohibits manufacture, possession, distribution, importation, selling, offering for sales, purchasing or transfer of large capacity magazines. Exceptions allow continued possession limited to possession prior to effective date and inheritance on or after the effective date. High capacity is defined as capable of holding 10 or more rounds.

SB5078 Addressing firearm safety measures to increase public safety. Similar wording and regulation as HB 1164.

HB1133 Reporting lost or stolen firearms. Requires lost or stolen firearms be reported to local law enforcement where loss occurred within five days, including make, model, serial number, caliber, and circumstances relating to loss. Similar local legislation enacted in Seattle and King County.

HB1134 Concerning the disposition of forfeited firearms by the Washington state patrol. Concerns forfeiture of firearms to the Washington State Patrol and limits amount of proceeds from auctions/transfers that local law enforcement is allowed.

Bills We Are Watching
  • HB1074 Regarding overdose and suicide reviews
  • HB1038 Prohibiting possession of firearms by persons convicted of certain criminal offenses.
  • No number yet—WSPTSA-backed bill for phone alert system.
  • Ban on assault-style firearms has not been filed though it is an AG request.

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