Bills require schools to provide parents informational material about gun violence prevention laws

LANSING, Mich., April 24, 2024 — Following last year’s mass shooting at MSU, Michigan Democrats took action and passed several pieces of legislation that reduce gun violence, including laws that require the safe storage of firearms when children are in the home. To further reduce unsafe firearm practices and keep children safe, state RepsSharon MacDonell (D-Troy) and Julie Brixie (D-East Lansing) introduced House Bills 5450 and 5451. These bills require schools to send home information about the new safe storage laws. These bills heard testimony in the House Education Committee yesterday, chaired by state Rep. Matt Koleszar (D-Plymouth).

“The importance of storing a gun properly cannot be understated,”  Koleszar said. “The testimony shows that this isn’t a partisan issue. Storing a gun properly and securely is one way that parents can protect their children from gun violence.”

Brixie and MacDonell

State Reps. Sharon MacDonell (D-Troy), left, and Julie Brixie (D-East Lansing) testify in the House Education Committee on April 23, 2024, in the House Office Building.

HB 5450, sponsored by MacDonell, requires the Department of Health and Human Services to develop and provide information regarding the safe storage of firearms to schools. HB 5451, sponsored by Brixie, requires school districts to provide that information to parents and legal guardians.

“Ensuring that parents know the new rules regarding the safe storage of guns is one of the best ways we can protect our kids, both in our homes and our schools,” MacDonell said. “Whether it’s from children accidentally hurting themselves from playing with guns, or purposely using their parents’ guns to hurt themselves or others, having guns safely stored away will help kids remain safe and secure.”

“If we can stop endless people from losing their lives by a piece of paper that is sent home to parents so that they can understand the importance of storing a gun properly, I can’t think of why there would be any resistance. None whatsoever,” said Ted Verner, member of the Clawson Board of Education and father of Alexandria Verner, who was killed at MSU last year.

Michigan Democrats also passed a number of other bills to help curb gun violence, from establishing extreme risk protection orders to expanding universal background checks and keeping guns out of the hands of committed domestic abusers.

“We have made great strides to curb gun violence in the state,” Brixie said. “But there is still work to do. House Democrats are committed to ensuring that every person in the state is protected and kept safe from gun violence. These bills that we’ve passed and are currently working on will only help to prevent further gun violence.”