WASHINGTON D.C. (WLNS) – Gun legislation inspired by the school shooting at Oxford High School just six months ago will move on to the U.S. Senate.
A package of bills including increasing the age for buying a semi-automatic rifle to 21-years-old has passed the House and is on its way to the Senate.
Also included is a bill that would require gun owners to store their guns away from minors
The Safe Guns, Safe Kids Act is part of that legislation package. Representative Elissa Slotkin introduced it in the aftermath of the shooting at Oxford High School. She said it’s the type of law needed to hold parents accountable.
“We had a family who knew that their son was having mental health challenges. Bought him a gun, he left it open and available for him. He grabbed it from home and took it to school and ended up killing four of his peers,” said Slotkin.
Slotkin said House Bill 6370 would require guns to be locked and out of reach from minors. The gun would also have to be kept in a safe place when not being carried by the owner.
If passed, penalties could be fines or up to five years in jail for people who do not properly secure guns.
Slotkin said the issue of gun violence extends from school shootings.
“We know that in Lansing, right, we just had a terrible series of shootings over the past weeks. I absolutely reject the idea that you either are a gun owner and care about hunting and being a sportsman, or you care about gun safety. I think you can do both,” Slotkin said.
The bill reads the penalties would come if the gun is used by a minor in a crime or hurts or kills someone or themselves.
Slotkin said looking ahead, the fight for gun safety laws will be an uphill battle in the senate.
“I’ll be totally honest, I want something to get done. I would like my bill in there, if it can’t be my bill, just move the needle a little bit. Just show that we can still be responsive as a government, Democrats and Republicans,” Slotkin said.
6 News reached out to both Republican Representatives Fred Upton and John Molenaar for a comment regarding this legislation but did not hear back from either office.
Molenaar did release a statement calling the bill package a restriction on “Law-abiding Michigan residents who follow the rules and safely exercise their second amendment rights every day.”