WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Democratic lawmakers in the House and Senate are introducing legislation that seeks to set federal standards for safe gun storage, as well as provide states with incentives to pass their own gun storage laws.
Ethan’s Law is named after 15-year-old Ethan Song of Guilford, Connecticut, who accidentally shot himself in the head last year with a handgun owned by his friend’s father.
“My beautiful boy Ethan, who had just gotten his braces off that morning, walked out of our home and walked towards his death,” his mother Kristin Song said on Capitol Hill. “Unbeknownst to me, his friend’s father kept three unsecured firearms in the home.”
Kristin and her husband Mark shared their story in hopes of creating a federal standard for safe gun storage.
“Safe storage saves lives,” Mark Song said.
Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro, D-Connecticut, introduced Ethan’s Law, which would require parents and other adults with children to lock up and safely store loaded and unloaded guns in the home.
“It would be against the law for a person to keep any firearm unsecured on their premises if there are children in the house,” DeLauro said.
According to DeLauro, approximately 4.6 million children live in homes with at least one gun that is loaded and unlocked.
For Congressman Jim Langevin, D-Rhode Island, a co-sponsor of the bill, this issue hits close to home.
“The accidental shooting that nearly took my life was devastating and that’s why I’m speaking to you today from this chair, and that’s why I’m passionate about protecting others,” Langevin said.
But the National Rifle Association (NRA) says this law will only make it harder for law-abiding citizens to protect themselves.
In a statement, the NRA said, “There is no scientific evidence that government-mandated, one-size-fits-all storage schemes reduce juvenile accidental firearm deaths or suicides.”