Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed legislation criminalizing the manufacture, sale, transport and possession of firearms and major components of such weapons that are undetectable by a metal detector, including 3D printed guns (S.1414-A/A.0763-A), and expanding laws requiring the safe storage of firearms (S.6360/A.8174). This legislation builds on New York's gun laws, including the Red Flag Bill signed in February that prevents individuals who show signs of being a threat to themselves or others from purchasing or possessing a firearm, and legislation Governor Cuomo signed yesterday extending the background check waiting period and banning bump stocks.
"3D guns and improperly stored firearms pose an enormous risk to our children and today we're addressing both dangers head-on to keep our families safe," Governor Cuomo said. "These measures continue New York's legacy of enacting the strongest gun laws in the nation by helping keep firearms out of the hands of children and by acknowledging and addressing technological advancements like 3D printed guns."
Criminalizing Undetectable Firearms
Recent technological developments, such as 3-dimensional printers and laser cutting machines, have led to the fabrication of fully operational firearms using materials that are undetectable by metal detectors. These weapons pose a serious threat to public safety and risk the health and well-being of all New Yorkers. This measure helps protect New Yorkers by making it illegal for any person to knowingly possess, manufacture, sell or transport such weapons in New York State.
Senator Kevin Parker said, "New York continues to be a national leader in preventing gun violence. 3D and undetectable guns have no place on our streets and the legislation I sponsored will create safer communities for all. I applaud Governor Cuomo for his commitment to addressing the gun violence epidemic and thank him for signing this legislation into law."
Assembly Member Thomas Abinanti said, "Undetectable guns have no legitimate purpose. This is another common sense step that the legislature and governor to deter gun violence and make New York safer for everyone."
Amending Safe Storage Laws
By enacting some of the strongest safe storage measures in the nation, Governor Cuomo has taken enormous strides toward preventing unnecessary gun violence across New York State. However, until now, our laws have failed to address the unintended - and often deadly - consequences of leaving unsecured firearms in places accessible by children. This measure will ensure that firearm owners safely store their weapons when they live with someone under the age of sixteen or have reason to know will be accessible by someone under the age of sixteen. At the same time, it will continue to permit properly licensed or supervised individuals under the age of sixteen to hunt or practice at a firing range in accordance with existing law. Nicholas Naumkin, a 12-year-old from Saratoga Springs who was tragically killed by his friend while he was playing with his father's gun, inspired this legislation.
Senator Liz Krueger said, "Our primary responsibility in government is to keep New York families safe. It's simply common sense that young children should not have unsupervised access to dangerous weapons, and no responsible gun owner would disagree. Too many times we've seen the tragic results when kids get their hands on guns. These tragedies are preventable. I thank Governor Cuomo for signing this bill today and taking this important step that will save lives and keep New York families whole."
Assembly Member Amy Paulin said, "Given everything we know about the effect a gun in the home can have on our children's health and safety, and the many tragic stories when a firearm was left unattended by an adult, this law is absolutely necessary for keeping our kids safe."
Assembly Member Marianne Buttenschon said, "I commend Governor Cuomo for signing this legislation which will keep our communities and our children safe. It is imperative that we teach our young people to respect firearms. With gun violence on the rise nationwide, I am proud New York continues to make legislative strides in addressing these issues. I applaud Governor Cuomo for his leadership and look forward to working with him in the future on additional firearm safety legislation."
Rebecca Fischer, NYAGV Executive Director, said, "Today, New York State has again made it a priority to protect our children and communities with this strong, sensible gun violence prevention legislation. New Yorkers Against Gun Violence has been fighting for 25 years for a child access prevention law in New York State to prevent unintentional shootings, teen suicides, school shootings, and gun thefts. We are grateful to Governor Cuomo and to our New York lawmakers who have the courage to take action and enact life-saving laws."
The scourge of gun violence throughout the nation is one of the most pressing issues of our time. Currently, the U.S. has the highest homicide-by-firearm rate among the world's most developed nations. In the most recent year of national data, gun deaths rose to their highest level in fifty years.
New York has passed the strongest gun control laws in the nation, including the SAFE Act in 2013 which keeps guns out of the hands of convicted felons and individuals with a mental illness, ensures private gun sales are subject to a background check, bans high-capacity magazines and assault weapons, and toughens criminal penalties for illegal gun use. The Governor also recently enacted the Red Flag bill to prevent individuals who pose a risk to themselves or others from purchasing a firearm. New York became the first state in the nation to empower its teachers and school administrators to help prevent school shootings through court intervention. This law also targets the well-known link between domestic abuse and deadly gun violence.