Gun Violence Prevention Plank of the California Democratic Party Platform


Gun Violence Prevention

California Democrats recognize the increasing impact of gun violence on the lives of all Americans, particularly in communities of color. California leads the nation with some of the most stringent gun laws, reducing our state’s firearm mortality by 55% since 1993. Still, more than 3,184 Californians died as the result of gun violence in a single year. 

To advance the cause of ending gun violence, California Democrats will: 

• Support a federal ban on assault weapons and high capacity magazines; 

• Support federal expansion of universal criminal background checks to include every gun, ammunition, and “ghost gun” component sale; 

• Support legislation that would prohibiting those with a history of violence, domestic abuse, or mental health concerns from purchasing or owning a weapon of any kind; 

• Require educational programs on safe use and storage of firearms and ammunition before any purchase approval; 

• Require all gun owners to pay an annual registration fee and carry liability insurance for each gun owned; 

• Promote policies that would restrict access to firearms by children, suicidal persons, and those in emotional crisis; 

• Support legislation that would hold gun owners liable for any crimes committed with their firearms for failure to follow safe storage practice; 

• Provide necessary resources and funding to implement training and enforcement of California’s existing gun laws, including the Armed Prohibited Persons System Program and the Gun Violence Restraining Order (GVRO), and means to trace all guns and to investigate all denied firearm purchasers; 

• Support the expansion of petitioners of GVROs to include co-workers, teachers, principals, employers, and mental health workers; 

• Support efforts to protect California’s gun laws from court challenges; 

• Support the repeal of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects firearms manufacturers and dealers from liability when crimes have been committed with their products; 

• Create tracking software that would trace weapons used in crimes back to the dealer who sold them; 

• Oppose any school administration with plans to arm teachers; 

• Work to ensure that California schools have adequate counseling resources to address bullying, domestic violence, suicide awareness, and trauma; 

• Advocate for adequate funding for community-based organizations dedicated to stopping the cycle of violence; 

• Support public outreach and law enforcement training for new and existing law enforcement professionals on the implementation of California’s Gun Violence Restraining Order (GVRO); 

• Support laws and policies that serve to aid in the investigation and prosecution of radicalized domestic terrorists and hate groups; 

• Encourage candidates running for office in local, statewide, and federal elections to advocate for common-sense gun laws and to support research, community investment, and public education focused on reducing gun violence; 

• Discourage candidates from accepting campaign contributions from the National Rifle Association (NRA) or other gun-rights organizations; 

• Urge Congress to take action by passing common-sense gun safety legislation;

• Support the creation, distribution and training of smart gun technology for members of Law Enforcement; and, 

• Support stiffer penalties for those dealers who participate in illegal sales including straw purchases.

From the California Democratic Party Platform: