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Florida Democrats aim to add gun safety initiatives

Posted at 11:07 PM, Jul 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-27 23:07:12-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — With the nation seeing a new series of mass shootings this year, Florida's Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services Nikki Fried is starting a new initiative effective immediately.

"Starting today, we'll be proactively including information about safe gun storage with every concealed weapons permit our department issues," Fried said in an interview Wednesday.

Nikki Fried, also a candidate for governor, says it's a step towards a safer state— and country where firearm-related injuries are the leading cause of death for those 19 and younger.

Whether it's an accident, violence, or suicide— Fried saying it's a problem.

"It is so important for all of us to do our part to make homes in our community safer. This initiative is an important step we can take to prevent accidental deaths and injuries," Fried said.

Admittedly — it's a small step when it comes to firearm reform.

Though not for lack of trying.

Florida Democrats, each year, have proposed a slate of bills that ban assault weapons, expand red flag laws, and more.

"It's the least we can do," Democratic State Rep. Dan Daley said.

Daley continues to sponsor a bill called Jamie's Law— named after Parkland victim Jamie Guttenberg.

It would require background checks for ammo purchases— just like firearms.

It has yet to get traction with GOP leaders who believe reforms in 2018 were strong enough.

They're looking at further expanding gun rights next session.

"They're talking about the concept of constitutional carry— which, folks, given Uvalde, Buffalo, and candidly Parkland back in 2018 — read the room," Daley said.

Republicans think they are.

The governor vowed to sign a constitutional carry bill before he leaves office — allowing people to carry without training or a permit.

"I think it's something we're going to do — lots of other states have done it. Things seem to be going fine in those states," Republican State Rep. Randy Fine said in a May interview about constitutional carry.

But a lot could change between now and the next session.

The midterms are fast approaching with lawmakers and the governor all on the ballot.