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Congressman Pascrell Introduces Childproof Handgun Act in House

Location: Washington, DC

March 17, 2005

Washington - Calling on Congress to do its part in combating the national tide of senseless gun violence, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-N.J. 8) today introduced comprehensive federal "personalized" handgun legislation, the "Childproof Handgun Act of 2005."

"Wisely, our government sets standards for child-safe cigarette lighters, insists that children riding in cars be buckled in approved car seats and demands manufacturers put childproof caps on aspirin containers. Yet handguns, which kill a staggering number of kids each day, have been off limits when it comes to safety improvements," stated Rep. Pascrell. "That all changes with the Childproof Handgun Act. My bill is common-sense legislation that will truly combat gun violence."

The Childproof Handgun Act of 2005, authored by Rep. Pascrell, requires that gun manufacturers develop and produce a "smart" or "personalized" gun within five years of passage. A personalized handgun is one that incorporates technology to allow operation only by authorized users. Over the years dozens of advancements have been achieved to make personalization credible, including the highly successful "dynamic grip recognition technology" advanced by the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

"I am proud to support Congressman Pascrell's common-sense gun safety legislation," stated Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY-4). "This bill will lay the groundwork for ensuring a future where no child is injured or killed in accidents involving handguns. Smart gun technology will save hundreds of lives each year without infringing on anybody's 2nd Amendment rights."

"This is not a Democratic or Republican issue. This is about saving the lives of our children. Our families need and deserve this protection. Inaction and empty promises do not keep deadly guns out of the hands of youngsters. It's about time," stated Bryan Miller, executive director of Ceasefire New Jersey.

Significantly, Pascrell's measure calls for the Comptroller General of the United States to issue a comprehensive report to Congress on the feasibility of personalized technology within two years of passage. If the report determines that such technology is not practicable at that time, the requirements on manufacturers would be dropped.

"No gun should be operable by a young child. That's something upon which we should all be able to agree. This bill is reasonable and gravely needed," said Pascrell. "This is not about taking guns away from law-abiding citizens. This is about saving the lives of our children."

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