New York, NY - June 1, 2015 - New Yorkers Against Gun Violence (NYAGV) today announced that a statewide poll of New York voter attitudes about the NY SAFE (Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement) Act reveals strong approval for the law. The poll was commissioned by NYAGV and conducted in April by Kiley & Company, an independent opinion research firm.
The poll also found strong support for the specific provisions of the law, with even gun owners supporting four of its six provisions. The NY SAFE Act was passed by a bipartisan legislature in January, 2013, soon after the Sandy Hook school shootings.
The Kiley & Company phone survey questioned 604 registered voters in New York State between April 14 and 16. The survey data was statistically adjusted by age, region and race to ensure representativeness.
Pollster Matthew Shelter of Kiley & Company commented, "The results of this survey clearly dispel the myth that the SAFE Act is not popular. On the contrary, New York voters are twice as likely to support the SAFE Act as oppose it.”
“This survey confirms yet again that New Yorkers strongly support our state’s smart gun laws,” said Leah Gunn Barrett, NYAGV Executive Director. “Voters realize that the provisions of the SAFE Act—including universal background checks, renewable pistol permits, a stronger assault weapons ban and protections for victims of domestic violence–are common sense measures designed to keep guns out of the wrong hands,” she added.
Voters Show Clear Support for the SAFE Act and its Provisions
The survey showed that New York State voters support the SAFE Act by almost a 2-to-1 majority (61% vs. 31%), confirming findings of previous statewide polls. When questioned separately on specific aspects of the law, support was even greater:
- An overwhelming majority of voters (89%) support background checks on all gun sales.
- Also by an overwhelming majority (81%), voters support revoking pistol permits for anyone with an order of protection against them.
- Over three quarters of voters (79%) approve of five-year renewable pistol permits.
- Three quarters (75%) of voters support the stronger ban on military-style assault weapons.
- Requiring background checks on ammunition sales is supported by 72% of voters.
- Over two-thirds (68%) of voters support limiting ammunition magazines to seven bullets.
Gun Owners and Upstate Voters Support the Act’s Provisions, But Not the Act Itself
Although gun owners said they oppose the SAFE Act, with 67% against and 24% in favor, these same voters support four of the six provisions of the Act. They support background checks on all gun sales (80%); revoking pistol permits for persons with protection orders against them (76%); five-year pistol permit renewals (53%); and the stronger ban on assault weapons (60%).
Also, while more upstate voters said they oppose the Act (48%) than support it (44%), these same voters support all six of the Act’s provisions: background checks on all gun sales (81%); revoking pistol permits for persons with protection orders against them (78%); five-year pistol permit renewals (66%); the stronger ban on assault weapons (67%); background checks on ammunition sales (56%); and limits on high-capacity magazines (52%).
“Even with the corporate gun lobby’s relentless attacks and misrepresentation of the SAFE Act, voters understand that the law is reasonable, keeps guns out of dangerous hands, and does not trample on any law-abiding person’s right to own a gun,” said Barrett.
Details of Survey Results
- Click here for a full polling memo from Kiley & Company, including relevant crosstabs.
- Click here for a PowerPoint presentation by Kiley & Company that illustrates the findings.
New Yorkers Against Gun Violence is a statewide advocacy group working to reduce gun violence through advocacy and education designed to encourage action, influence public opinion and lead to policy change. With a primary focus on New York State, the organization also advocates at the local and national levels for sensible gun laws, policies and practices that protect New York State residents from gun violence.