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Domestic Violence Homicide is a Public Health Crisis

Missouri’s ranking as 7th in the nation in the number of women murdered by men was part of a public policy presentation by MCADSV’s CEO, Colleen Coble, to more than 100 health care providers and advocates for women’s health who attended the 16th annual Missouri Health Policy Summit on October 26 in Columbia. Missouri’s consistent ranking in the top 10 states with the highest rates of domestic violence abusers who used guns to murder their female partners was identified by Coble as an ongoing public health crisis and public policy concern that is imperative of the state’s lawmakers’ attention.  The Violence Policy Center’s report, When Men Kill Women, was issued in September.

For more than two decades, MCADSV has advocated for the Missouri General Assembly to pass legislation that would prohibit domestic violence offenders from possessing firearms—a state law to parallel the federal laws passed in the 1990s that prohibit gun possession by convicted domestic violence offenders and those with protection orders in effect against them. MCADSV has detailed loopholes in Missouri’s firearms legislation in previous Latest News posts.

Federal law, effective since 1997, prohibits a person who is the respondent of a full Order of Protection, or a person convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, from purchasing, possessing, owning, transporting, shipping or receiving firearms or ammunition. This law was upheld twice by the United States Supreme Court.

Women continue to pay with their lives for our lack of gun laws. Prohibiting domestic violence offenders from possessing a firearm is a common sense solution to prevent domestic violence homicides. These protections are not only a bipartisan issue; they are a Missouri value.

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