Our Statement on Supreme Court's Decision on Guns and Domestic Violence
By natalie-petrieJun 29, 2016
On Wednesday, June 29, 2016, Rebecca White, Houston Area Women's Center President and CEO, joined Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee and several gun violence prevention groups for the "National Day of Action for Gun Violence Prevention Summit" to talk about the link between firearms and domestic violence, as well as the impact of the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision to help prevent these tragedies from happening in the future:
"As advocates, we know all too well the tragic link between domestic violence and firearms. We applaud the Supreme Court’s ruling in Voisine v. United States on Monday. The ruling offers valuable clarity and consistency across all jurisdictions and definitively resolves any questions left open in previous cases addressing this issue. It also draws renewed and needed attention to the critical importance of keeping guns out of the hands of those convicted of domestic violence. The lethal intersection between domestic violence and perpetrators’ access to a firearm is well documented. The presence of a firearm in domestic violence situations increases the risk of lethality of victims by 500 percent," said White.
"Last year, our domestic violence hotline responded to approximately 40,000 calls. So — every day, advocates on our domestic violence hotline conduct lethality assessments with callers who are contemplating fleeing their abusers. Knowing that survivors are in the greatest danger as they leave an abusive relationship, one of the most critical elements our advocates ask about and consider is whether the abuser has access to a firearm. Prohibiting access to guns contributes to increased accountability for convicted abusers and it absolutely results in increased safety for their victims."