White House Convenes on Implementing Red Flag Laws

The White House

On April 12, the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention and Office of Intergovernmental Affairs hosted 30 local leaders from across 15 states in response to the Vice President urging states to use federal funding for the implementation of existing red flag laws, which allow family members or law enforcement to seek a court order to temporarily take away access to guns if there is evidence a person may harm themselves or others.

Last month, Vice President Harris encouraged states to use Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) funding to implement existing red flag laws. While the Biden-Harris Administration has made $750 million in federal funding available to implement state crisis intervention programs -which includes red flag programs - much of this funding remains unused. Of the 21 states that currently have passed red flag laws, only six are using BSCA funding to implement them.

During the virtual event, senior Biden-Harris Administration officials along with state and local government leaders and gun violence prevention experts highlighted the impact BSCA funding can have on the implementation of red flag laws across the country and encouraged other states to take up the Vice President's call, in order to protect their communities and save lives.

Office of Gun Violence Prevention Director Stefanie Feldman, Deputy Director Rob Wilcox and Deputy Director Greg Jackson were joined by Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority Executive Director Delrice Adams, Illinois Criminal Justice Information Technical Director Maureen Brennan, Brady Chief Programs and Policy Officer Christian Heyne, Ad Council Vice President Allison Baum, Illinois Department of Public Health Deputy Director Lauri Sanders, Illinois Department of Public Health Chief Operating Officer Shannon Lightner, and San Diego City Attorney Mara Elliott.

Today's convening comes on the heels of the Biden-Harris Administration announcing a new rule that will save lives by reducing the number of firearms sold without background checks. This action is part of the Biden-Harris Administration's strategy to stem the flow of illegally acquired firearms into our communities and hold accountable those who supply the firearms used in crime.

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