Gun safety

We need laws, not just thought and prayers

firearms or ammunition under federal or state law; or explicitly authorize or require the removal of firearms or ammunition at the scene of a domestic violence incident.

The League of Women Voters of Texas supported HB 866, authored by Representative Joe Moody during the 85th legislative session. This legislation would have given judges the authority to issue a temporary Lethal Violence Protective Order (LVPO) if law enforcement or direct family members could prove with sufficient evidence that an individual is an immediate danger to themselves or others.

At this time, we do not know if there was any indication that the shooter was a danger to themselves or others. Anyone subject to a LVPO would be required to turn over any firearms to law enforcement, and their ability to purchase or possess a firearm would be suspended for a year, or less. Similar legislation has already been proven to help save lives in other states. The bill died in the Criminal Jurisprudence Committee. Sen. José Rodriguez' companion bill, SB 434, was assigned to the Texas Senate's State Affairs Committee chaired by Sen. Joan Huffman - yet never received a hearing.

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, there was a total of 3492 trauma hospitalizations

with an injury due to firearm in 2014.  The hospital charges for firearm injuries ranged from $54-$5,618,050 per hospitalization. Only 770 (22%) of those injuries were unintentional.

Thoughts and prayers won't keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers or someone who could be a threat to themselves or others.

The 2018 primary is just around the corner. The League urges Texans to make their voices heard. The filing dates for primary candidates that are regularly scheduled to be on the primary ballot are Saturday, Nov. 11 - Monday, Dec. 11.

Get familiar with your candidates. Learn their positions on gun safety. Check their voting records if they are incumbents. Finally and most importantly: Get out and VOTE!

For information, contact  Aileen McMurrer at 512-472-1100.