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Would FL Legislature eliminate a three-day mandatory waiting period to purchase a firearm?

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A GOP lawmaker has filed legislation to eliminate the three-day mandatory waiting period to purchase a firearm, a measure that was part of the gun control law passed by state lawmakers in 2018 following the shooting massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, in Broward County.

The bill to remove the three-day waiting period is being sponsored in the Florida state House by North Florida Rep. Joel Rudman. Currently gun buyers are required to wait a minimum of three days, excluding weekends and holidays, or the completion of a records check before acquiring a firearm, according to state law.

Florida is one of just eleven states (along with the District of Columbia) that impose some time of waiting period to purchase a firearm, according to the gun-safety group Giffords.

According to current Florida law, the waiting period does not apply in the following circumstances:

When a firearm is purchased by a holder of a concealed weapons permit.To a trade-in of another firearm.To the purchase of a rifle or shotgun, upon a person’s successfully completing a minimum of a 16-hour hunter safety course and possessing a hunter safety certification card.When a rifle or shotgun is being purchased by a law enforcement officer or correctional officer.

Gun safety groups cite research that says that the immediate purchase and acquisition of a gun allows people to act on temporary emotions and impulses which can increase the risk of both gun suicide and gun homicide, according to Giffords’ website.

A 2017 paper written by three Harvard Business School professors said that waiting period laws that delay the purchase of firearms by a few days reduce gun homicides by approximately 17%.

Meanwhile, ahead of the 2024 session, the Florida chapters of the gun safety groups Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action released a statement on Monday regarding their legislative priorities for the 2024 session.

They are asking for legislation to secure the state’s storage law to better protect Floridians by preventing unintentional shootings, gun suicides and thefts. Current Florida law only requires Florida residents to store firearms if a child 15 or younger could gain access.

“Florida should improve its law and require guns to be stored securely any time they are not in the owner’s possession–including in vehicles. In recent years, guns have been stolen from cars at an increasingly alarming rate, and are now the largest source of stolen firearms,” the two groups said in a written statement.

They’re also calling for funding for community-based violence intervention programs in the communities “that are hardest hit by gun violence.”

In the 2023 session, Florida lawmakers did approve $5 million for Community Violence Intervention Funding, but the line-item was later vetoed by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Florida Phoenix is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Florida Phoenix maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Diane Rado for questions: info@floridaphoenix.com. Follow Florida Phoenix on Facebook and Twitter.

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  • gdrahal

    One party has run Florida for over 20 years. 7 out of 10 voters vote for this governor, this legislature and most County Commissioners. The only way for change is to VOTE FOR CHANGE.

    Thursday, October 12, 2023 Report this