October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, a time when we mourn the many lives lost due to domestic violence and renew our efforts to reduce domestic violence homicides, especially those committed by guns.
Just one year ago, Zina Daniel and two others were shot and killed in a Wisconsin hair salon by her estranged husband after he bought a gun online, bypassing his legal restriction due to a restraining order. It was a tragedy that could have been prevented, if only all gun purchases required Brady background checks.
In recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we call upon Congress to pass pending legislation to expand Brady background checks on gun purchases, like H.R. 1565.
Today, 40 percent of gun sales do not require Brady background checks. This makes it far too easy for dangerous domestic abusers to get their hands on guns and harm innocent victims.
Current gun laws narrowly defining spousal relationships and a lack of a federal ban on stalkers subject to a restraining order continues to put women at risk and should be strengthened to protect them.
We simply must do more to limit the access domestic abusers have to firearms.