Hearing Addresses Guns, Mental Health in Wake of Calif. Shooting
On Monday, Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) held a hearing to discuss ways to curb gun violence, including through bolstering mental health care and background checks, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports (Thompson, AP/Sacramento Bee, 12/14).
California operates a database to cross-reference certain criminal convictions, mental health records and active domestic violence restraining orders when individuals purchase firearms. About one-third of individuals in the database are included for mental health reasons.
Details of Hearing
The hearing was scheduled for the third anniversary of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut on Dec. 14, 2012, which 20 first-grade children and six educators were killed. It also came less than two weeks after 14 Californians were killed during a shooting in San Bernardino.
Thompson, chair of House Democrats' Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, started the hearing by criticizing Congress' inaction on gun violence since 2012.
During the hearing, some stakeholders said that bolstering the federal background check process and increasing mental health services could help reduce gun violence. Such proposals received support from gun rights advocates.
Meanwhile, gun control advocates -- including Calif. Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) -- proposed background checks for buying ammunition and requiring police reports when firearms are lost or stolen (AP/Sacramento Bee, 12/14).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.