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The negotiation and passage of Senate Bill 7026 — a 100-page gun control and school safety measure that is awaiting Gov. Rick Scott's signature —  prompted some Democratic lawmakers to question whether LGBT and black victims of gun violence matter less to Republican leaders than white, affluent ones.

Roberto Roldan / WUSF Public Media

The National Rifle Association has filed a federal lawsuit over gun control legislation Florida Gov. Rick Scott has signed, saying it violates the Second Amendment by raising the age to buy guns from 18 to 21.

A piece of legislation under consideration in Florida this week has received a lot of attention because of a controversial provision that would allow some teachers to have guns in schools. But the proposed law would also designate an influx of cash for mental health services.

The white Republican leaders of the Florida Legislature believe giving guns to school staff members will help protect students.

But black members in both houses warn it could endanger them — particularly children of color, who are often disciplined more harshly than their white peers in school.

Florida Senate Tees Up Gun Safety Legislation For Monday Vote

Mar 5, 2018

The Florida Senate held a rare Saturday session, discussing legislation aimed at making schools safer, following the February 14th mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland that left 14 students and three faculty members dead.

About 50 uniformed officers marched into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School early Wednesday, just one aspect of the heavy security as classes resumed for the first time since 17 students and teachers were killed by a troubled teenager with an AR-15, thrusting them into the center of the nation's gun debate.

Some gun safety proposals passed their first Florida Senate committee without an assault weapons ban. While top GOP lawmakers are calling the effort bipartisan, some Democrats pushing for more gun reforms disagree.

One man in upstate New York sawed his AR-15 rifle into pieces and posted a video of it on Facebook. A woman in Connecticut did the same with her handgun. Not far from scene of the Florida high school shooting in Parkland, another man brought his assault weapon to police and asked them to destroy it.

The criminal case against the gunman accused in the Florida high school shooting returns to court Tuesday with prosecutors seeking hair samples, fingerprints, DNA and photographs of the suspect.

Florida’s governor and state lawmakers each released plans for improving school safety following last week’s shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, including major changes to gun laws and more money for mental health.

Transportation Security Administration

As travelers head to airports during the busy holiday week, airport security officials have a message: Don’t try to bring your guns on the plane.

A bill seeking to make it easier for firearm dealers to pay for the criminal background checks has unanimously passed its first Senate committee.

Megan Hobson was 16 years old when she was caught in the crossfire of a drive-by shooting in Miami Gardens.

A new gun club in South Florida is geared towards training black gun owners and teaching people to support the Second Amendment within the black community.

A bill allowing people to bring their guns to, but not into a courthouse is scheduled to be taken up on the Senate floor Thursday. Sen. Greg Steube (R-Sarasota) is the bill’s sponsor.

“This bill would allow a license permit holder to carry their firearm to the entrance of a courthouse, surrender that firearm to law enforcement at the courthouse, go into the courthouse without their firearm, and on the way exiting the courthouse, get their firearm back,” he said.

Battle lines are being drawn in Florida over a perennially thorny issue: Guns.  State lawmakers have filed over a dozen bills seeking changes to existing gun laws. 

Justices Uphold Ban On Openly Carrying Guns

Mar 3, 2017

Rejecting arguments by Second Amendment supporters, the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a longstanding state ban on people openly carrying firearms in public.

Baxley Challenges Gun-Free Zones in Proposal

Feb 15, 2017

Sen. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, has filed a bill which would allow more guns in public places. The measure is part of a broader push by Republican legislators to expand gun rights.

Florida Matters: Surviving Gun Violence

Feb 14, 2017
MARSHA HALPER

You'll often hear the news of young people tragically dying from gun violence. But what about those who live?


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Authorities say a Tampa Bay area teen is facing a felony charge after bringing a pellet gun to school.

40 Handguns Stolen During Burglary in Lakeland

Jan 11, 2017
MGN Online

Authorities say at least 40 handguns were stolen during a burglary at a Central Florida gun store.

MGN Online

Deputies say a 13-year-old Florida boy is accused of bringing a loaded gun to his middle school.

Justices Will Not Hear Challenge To UF Gun Policy

Apr 13, 2016

In a victory for the University of Florida, the state Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to take up a dispute about whether guns should be allowed in university housing.

State, Gun-Rights Groups Back 'Docs V. Glocks' Law

Mar 30, 2016

Readying for oral arguments in June, attorneys for the state and Second Amendment groups are urging a full federal appeals court to uphold a 2011 Florida law that would restrict doctors from asking questions and recording information about patients' gun ownership.

Battle Rages Over Florida Law Limiting Doctors' Gun Speech

Feb 29, 2016

As a pediatrician, Dr. Judith Schaechter can ask parents of her patients all sorts of questions regarding their safety and well-being: what the child eats, whether there's a backyard pool and whether the child gets enough sleep.

Governor Rick Scott signed a number of bills into law Wednesday. Among them are a pair of gun-related bills that have the backing of law enforcement and gun rights groups.

Florida Matters: Gun Debate

Feb 23, 2016
Associated Press

The members of the Manatee Tiger Bay Club recently debated the issues of guns.  This week on Florida Matters (Tuesday, Feb. 23 at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, Feb. 28 at 7:30 a.m.), we feature highlights of the conversation, which was moderated by  Manatee Tiger Bay Club President Ben Bakker.

Associated Press File Photo

Gun confiscations at Tampa International Airport security checkpoints have been rising, and if the numbers stay high, the airport could become among the top three in the nation for firearms seizures.

Media outlets report that last year, Transportation Security Administration officers discovered 49 guns on passengers or in their carry-on luggage at the Tampa airport.

The Florida Senate passed a series of gun bills Thursday.

The Legislature will begin its annual session early this year with the hopes of avoiding the chaos and dysfunction that marked the 2015 session and three special sessions that followed.

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