Press Release
January 30, 2010


Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago appealed to law enforcers and gun owners to use the prevailing gun ban as an opportunity to observe and improve gun safety standards in the country.

In accordance to election law, the Commission on Elections imposed a nationwide gun ban last January 10.

"Since gun owners will be keeping their firearms at home for the whole election period, how safely they store their weapons could mean life or death," Santiago said.

The reelectionist senator is pushing for laws imposing regulations for both gun owners and manufacturers to curb injuries and death due to the negligent maintenance and storage of firearms.

Santiago's Senate Bill No. 1466 provides for an obligatory course under the Philippine National Police on the safe use, maintenance, and storage of handguns as a requisite for an individual to acquire a gun license.

"On top of knowing how to aim and shoot a gun, owners of firearms should be required to be knowledgeable in the proper storage and maintenance of their weapons. The right to bear arms comes with great responsibilities," Santiago said.

Santiago also filed S.B. No. 1854, also known as the "Childproof Handgun Act," which is aimed to decrease shooting incidents or crimes by requiring the manufacturers to incorporate certain technology or locking devices within its design that will prevent the firing of a handgun by unauthorized or unrecognized users, especially children.

"Laws regulating the possession and trade of firearms should be passed and implemented in order to comply with the constitutional mandate of maintaining peace and order; the protection of life, liberty, and property; and the promotion of the general welfare," Santiago said.

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