Washington, DC — Following remarks urging immediate action on “red flag” laws by President Biden at the White House today, Rep. Lucy McBath (GA-06), who stood by the President at the event, reintroduced H.R. 2377, the Federal Extreme Risk Protection Order Act. Extreme risk laws—also called “red flag laws”—empower loved ones and law enforcement to ensure that those who pose a threat to themselves or others do not have access to firearms.
The President’s announcement includes plans for the Justice Department to release model “red flag” legislation for states in the next 60 days. McBath’s bill, first introduced in 2019, is the only legislation that would ensure nationwide access to this important gun violence prevention measure.
“We see it time and time again, the heartbreak of gun violence that could have been prevented by common-sense legislation. When people are in crisis and pose a threat to themselves or others, those closest to them are often the first to see the warning signs. Extreme risk laws are a powerful tool that will help save American lives and prevent the pain that gun violence brings,” said McBath. “I am proud to echo the President’s call, lead this legislation, and empower loved ones and law enforcement as they strive to protect our families and our communities.”
On the House floor, McBath shared the story of Mary Miller-Strobel and her brother, Ben Miller, a combat veteran who suffered from depression and PTSD. Mary and her father begged every gun store in their area not to sell Ben a gun, worried that in a moment of desperation he might take his own life. Ben Miller died by suicide with a gun he bought at a local store. Extreme risk protection orders provide family, loved ones, and law enforcement the tools to help prevent gun violence for those who might be a threat to themselves or to others.
Nineteen states and the District of Columbia have enacted extreme risk laws to allow law enforcement adequate time to respond to warning signs of a planned shooting or suicide. Identical bipartisan legislation was introduced in the Senate by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) during the 115th Congress, S.2521.