NewsDetroit City Council Seeks To Establish More Gun-Free Zones In The City

Detroit City Council Seeks To Establish More Gun-Free Zones In The City

According to PBS, the Detroit City Council is making big moves to attempt to stop persistent gun violence in the Michigan city. Following an April weekend that had six separate shooting events, Council members demanded a significant change to a longstanding state law that would allow individual counties to establish “gun-free zones” in their cities at their discretion.

The seemingly bold move was prompted by the increasing danger associated with formally popular Detroit areas due to gun violence. Gun-free zones seek to reduce firearm deaths in high-risk places drastically. They could involve things such as hospitals, churches, restaurants, and courthouses. Despite what the name implies, the current laws surrounding gun-free zones don’t restrict all guns in the space, as open carrying is still allowed. Concealed carrying, however, would not be permitted. 
Detroit police have been enforcing a curfew for unaccompanied minors and requesting people to leave their guns at home. Still, Councilmembers are hopeful that a law would be able to implement better what police are trying to do.

“Resolution 19.14, which the council passed in a much narrower 5-4 vote after some debate, endorsed the idea of gun-free zones in specific public downtown areas of Detroit where large crowds gather for big events, including the city’s riverfront area.”

Democratic Senator Jeff Irwin explained, “[The bill] proposes to restore the authority that local governments used to have to maintain security in their buildings and on their properties. The current law, a broad preemption law, prevents local governments from making any rules.” Irwin added, “People can conceal carry [and] people can open carry [firearms] in public hearings where there might be a tense conversation among neighbors about zoning or about police accountability, about anything. In some places, people attempt to bring weapons in to discourage others from participating in their democracy. That’s really wrong.”
Irwin also recognized that the new proposals would allow cities to decide what’s best for those who live there. The ordinance would allow more than the current state capitols, private businesses, and federal courts to designate gun-free zones. It would turn over the current restriction on local government units from doing so. 

Source: Black Enterprise

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