Bipartisan Safer Communities Act: Partially Closing the "Boyfriend Loophole"

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June 30, 2022

Bipartisan Safer Communities Act:

Partially Closing the "Boyfriend Loophole"

We are still reeling from last week's devastating blow to women's health, autonomy and equality. Our mission is more important than ever and our work continues. Last week Congress passed--and over the weekend President Biden signed into law--the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act. We commend Congress for including in this package provisions which partially close the so-called "boyfriend loophole." As a result, abusers convicted of dating violence will no longer be able to possess or receive firearms. This is a critical first step to reducing dating violence homicides. Previously the domestic violence firearm prohibition only applied to adjudicated abusers who were currently/formerly married to, cohabitating with, or had a child in common with the victim. The presence of a firearm increases the risk that domestic violence will result in a fatality by 500% and more than half of women murdered by intimate partners are killed with a firearm. The dating violence provisions included in the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act will save lives. Yet there still remain gaps, including that dating partners subject to final protective orders are not covered. We appreciate this progress and will continue to advocate for full closure of the boyfriend loophole.