Lawmakers Highlight Passing Gun Control, Reproductive Rights Measures

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ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) — Democratic lawmakers who make up the Greater Rochester-area state delegation discussed the recent passage of gun safety bills in New York City on Tuesday. The group also spoke about progress in reproductive legislation among ongoing efforts.

The delegation applauded the legislature’s swift action surrounding the gun control package, which was just signed by Governor Hochul. Several of the actions were taken in a short time, just weeks before the end of the session, in response to the mass shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde, Texas.

“We knew there was something specific we had to do even in the last two weeks of the legislative session and that is why we are here today, as the Assemblyman described it. Bronson, but also to remind people that we realize that New York State is the final barrier between many of these rollbacks, many of the failures to act on the part of the federal government,” said Senator Samra Brouk.

On reproductive rights, lawmakers drew attention to ongoing efforts to add protections for those seeking safe abortions in New York State. This follows the leaked draft opinion from the United States Supreme Court stating that they will overturn the historic Roe vs. Wade. Regardless of this decision, when it is officially announced, abortions will remain legal in New York following a 2019 decision to codify Roe v. Wade in state law.

“The legislation we have proposed for reproductive health rights in New York will ensure that anti-choice states do not target people who come to our state to exercise their right to choose,” says Assemblyman Harry Bronson.

Senator Jeremy Cooney spoke about the challenges of creating policies around burning issues.

“A lot of times we hear about gun violence, gun control or gun safety, we get emotional and we take it. Some of us are looking for bolder action, some of us are looking to roll things back, but that’s not what we as the majority delegation are looking to do. What we are looking for is the safety of our families, the safety of our communities, the safety of our streets,” said Senator Cooney.

Assemblyman Demond Meeks discussed his bill which will focus on the role social media plays in gun violence.

“I am proud that I was able to introduce and pass legislation that will establish the Social Media and Violent Extremism Task Force. This bill will help us understand how online platforms have facilitated and encouraged hate and domestic terrorism,” said MP Meeks.

Legislation passed last week and officially signed into law by Governor Kathy Hochul on Monday includes expanding New York’s Red Flag Act in 2019, raising the age to purchase a semi-automatic firearm from 18 to 21, determining and establishing technology for microstamp ammunition, and more. .

Partner at law firm Brenna Boyce, Sheldon Boyce explains that when it comes to legal challenges, the new measure requiring a license for a semi-automatic is one of the most controversial.

“Every section and subdivision they just added where it says ‘no pistol or revolver’, now it says ‘…or a semi-automatic rifle’ so they will have to go through the whole permit system full-fledged gun in the county the person lives in,” Boyce explains.

Assemblyman Demond Meeks says there is still work to be done on gun control measures. He introduced a bill for the next session that will require New York state residents to take a five-hour gun safety course before being allowed to buy a gun or ammunition. .

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