The intersection of intimate partner violence and gun violence is deadly and the ripple effects of the trauma echo far beyond the intimate relationship – affecting children who live with and witness it, and the family members, coworkers, and law enforcement who respond to it. Our top priority in the legislature is keeping people safe, especially survivors of domestic and gender-based violence. An order of protection is a key tool to help protect survivors, especially as they try and leave a violent relationship.

Right now, the order of protection process is failing too many domestic violence survivors, especially when firearms are involved. When an order of protection is granted with the firearm remedy, that gun needs to be removed from the home immediately. We cannot have any ambiguity about this process, the stakes are too high.

Karina’s Bill will clarify the law and give law enforcement clear directives on removing firearms from the home. This legislation is critically important as domestic violence is on the rise both in Chicago and across our state. Last year, there were 56 domestic violence homicides across Illinois, up from 40 in 2021 and 37 in 2020. Added to the rise in domestic violence is the proliferation of firearms across our state. In the US, intimate partner homicide represents 40-50% of the murders of all women.

We have taken a number of important steps forward in gun violence prevention in Illinois in recent years, but we cannot stop doing this important work. Karina’s Bill will close loopholes and strengthen state law to keep more survivors safe and ultimately save lives.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and the legislature is scheduled to be in session in a few weeks. I am going to do everything in my power to ensure this bill is passed during the Veto Session. We cannot sit by while tragedies like the one that struck Karina, Daniela, and their family continue to occur.

Get the latest bill one-pager

Karina’s bill:

  • Requires firearm removal to occur during service of an emergency order of protection (OP) when granted by a judge.
  • Clarifies existing language in statute for a judge to issue a warrant when granting the firearm remedy to allow for consistent firearm removal enforcement across the state.
  • Closes a loophole in current statute by barring transfer of ownership of firearms when the firearm remedy is granted.
  • Adds dating partners and ex-dating partners to the list of petitioners in the firearm restraining orders act to create additional avenues of firearm relief when an OP is not needed.
text reads "Guns make domestic violence deadly. Access to a gun makes a survivor of domestic violence 5 times more likely to be fatally shot by an intimate partner."

I applaud today’s ruling for commonsense gun safety as a lawmaker, as a Moms Demand Action volunteer, and as a mother myself.

First and foremost, I’m glad to see our Supreme Court upholding the work so many of my neighbors sent me to Springfield to do. I know there is more work to be done, so I am heartened to see that the voices of so many students, moms, and other advocates means more than the money and clout of the gun lobby. And I’m grateful to know, at least in Illinois, we will value our children more than we value guns.

We will not accept the national mania that would have us believe that seeing people massacred in our classrooms, in movie theaters, and on our streets is a price we must pay again and again.

We will act on behalf of the students who have spoken clearly about the need for change; we will comfort the parents who drop their kids off at school and say a silent prayer that they make it home safe; and we will continue the work of ending gun violence in every community in this state.

Yours sincerely,

Maura Hirschauer

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Building on years of advocacy, state Rep. Maura Hirschauer, D- Batavia, passed a balanced budget and legislation that prevents gun violence and invests in youth and community development.

“When the Governor introduced his budget proposal months ago, I made it a priority for the final product to help bolster community safety by tackling the root causes of violence. I am proud to have supported a budget that invests in violence interruption and prevention services to keep our communities safe,” Hirschauer said. “Our budget is a representation of what we value, and this year’s budget sends an unequivocal message that the safety and wellbeing of our children and communities is essential.”

The Hirschauer-backed fiscal year 2024 budget provides millions of dollars in funding for non- profit organizations and local governments for violence interruption and prevention, community development, and youth employment. It also fully funds a multi-million dollar safe gun storage public awareness campaign to help prevent unintentional shootings, saving many, especially children, from accidental death and gun-related injuries.

In concert with the violence prevention measures in the budget, Hirschauer recently passed a House Bill 676 which would, among other measures, keeps guns out of the hands of domestic abusers by clarifying that the respondent of the firearms restraining order is prohibited from acquiring or possessing any firearms for the duration of the order of protection and outlining the process and timeframe for firearms to be seized after the entry of the order of protection. The bill also permits intimate partners to petition for a firearms order of protection, closing what is commonly known as the “boyfriend loophole.”

“In Illinois, we can compassionately govern while still maintaining strong fiscal responsibility to create a safer, brighter future,” Hirschauer said. “Though we’ve made tremendous progress this session, our work is still ongoing, and I will always stand up for the safety and wellbeing of Illinois families.”

Rep. Hirschauer Named to Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group

Rep. Maura Hirschauer

(D-Batavia)
49th District

Springfield Office:
271-S Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-1653

District Office:
946 Neltnor Blvd #104
West Chicago IL 60185

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — State Rep. Maura Hirschauer, D-Batavia, passed a bill out of the Illinois House of Representatives Friday to further prevent gun violence and protect Illinois communities, particularly survivors of domestic abuse.

“The presence of guns can mean the difference between life and death for survivors of domestic violence and people in abusive relationships,” Hirschauer said. “When abusers have access to a gun, the risk of intimate-partner homicide increases by 500 percent, according to research from the American Journal of Public Health. Removing guns from these volatile situations is a commonsense solution that will undoubtedly save the lives of vulnerable people.”

House Bill 676 clarifies that the respondent of the firearms restraining order is prohibited from acquiring or possessing any firearms for the duration of the order of protection, and outlines the process and timeframe for firearms to be seized after the entry of the order of protection. The bill also permits intimate partners to petition for a firearms order of protection, closing what is commonly known as the “boyfriend loophole.”

The bill also includes several other provisions, including the creation of a task force to review public policy options relating to the insurance of firearms in Illinois. It also expands the First Time Weapons Offense Program for first-time, non-violent offenders charged with certain weapons offenses. This successful diversion program provides alternatives to the criminal justice system likely to reduce further crime and promote public safety.

“Gun violence is a complex public health and safety problem that necessitates comprehensive, multifaceted solutions. This bill is another step in our journey to end gun violence and make Illinois a safer place to live, work, and raise a family,” Hirschauer said. “I am grateful to my colleagues, especially the members of the Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group, for passing this bill, and I implore my colleagues in the Senate to do the same and stand up for the safety of Illinois communities once again.”

House Bill 676 awaits consideration by the Illinois Senate. For more information on Hirschauer’s legislative agenda, please visit www.ilga.gov.

Rep. Hirschauer Named to Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group

Rep. Maura Hirschauer

(D-Batavia)
49th District

Springfield Office:
271-S Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-1653

District Office:
946 Neltnor Blvd #104
West Chicago IL 60185

To the People of Kane County:

Gun violence is a uniquely American public health epidemic; while we know the remedies, public officials like Sheriff Ron Hain refuse to prescribe them. We are fighting every day for those remedies, so on one point we agree with what the Sheriff said in this Daily Herald headline: we are also embarrassed that Sheriff Hain has a “D” by his name.

The Protect Illinois Communities Act is not about politics, it is common sense public safety policy that will keep weapons of war out of neighborhoods and homes. It was publicly discussed at three subject matter hearings in December of 2022. If the Sheriff had cared to pay attention or check his facts he would have seen that several representatives from law enforcement spoke on the record in support of the bill at a hearing on December 20, 2022. But, much to the detriment of the people of Kane County, Sheriff Hain doesn’t care about facts, he prefers to spread misinformation and stoke the flames of controversy.

Families in our community have been loud and clear — enough is enough. There is nothing political about dropping your child off at school and fearing you may never see them again. No Kane county resident should feel unsafe celebrating at a parade, shopping at their local grocery store, or gathering in a park. Legislators in Illinois heeded the calls of our constituents and joined eight other states in banning the sale and possession of assault style weapons. We took action and we stand by our commitment to common sense gun safety. 

Gun violence is a complex and multifaceted public health crisis and each piece of the puzzle deserves attention — from sustained investment in community violence intervention programs and, yes, mental health support, to job creation and addressing inequalities in our public schools. But for us to continue to pretend that the mass proliferation of guns isn’t the number one factor contributing to gun violence is to deny both basic common sense and empirical research in a way that is either embarrassingly naive or maliciously disingenuous. We do need a more comprehensive approach to mental health treatment, we need to expand access to opportunity, and we need to bridge political and cultural divides – but no serious approach to gun violence can ignore the ease of access to weapons of war.  

Again, we ask Sheriff Hain to step back from public disputes and commit to working together on public safety policies that will benefit the people of Kane County. Our doors are always open for collaboration and he knows where to find us.

Sincerely,

Senator Cristina Castro – 22nd District
Senator Karina Villa – 25th District
Representative Barbara Hernandez – 50th District
Representative Maura Hirschauer – 49th District
Representative Anna Moeller – 43rd District

To the People of Kane County:

We are four Illinois State Representatives that represent many of you and your families in Kane County. Like you and so many others who have contacted us in recent days, we are disappointed by the recent statement from the Kane County Sheriff that misrepresents the Protect Illinois Communities Act. We are additionally alarmed by statements from sheriffs across the state that call into question the constitutionality of the law. Sheriff offices have no authority to determine the constitutionality of a law–that is up to the courts. Nor can they pick and choose which laws to enforce; they must enforce them all.

This bipartisan law is the product of hundreds of hours of negotiations and advocacy from across our shared community, including with the Illinois State Police, the Illinois Association of Police Chiefs, and the Illinois Association of Sheriffs. Law enforcement was given a seat at the negotiating table and several of their changes were incorporated into the final bill.

Many of us have been working on gun violence prevention policy for years, and we recognize that gun violence is a complex and multifaceted public health crisis and each piece of the puzzle deserves attention. We agree with the Kane Sheriff that expanding funding and access to mental health services is an important component of gun violence prevention. That is why we have invested over $500 million in community based violence interruption programs, including diversion programs and youth employment opportunities. We have expanded tele-health for mental health providers, and designated that 20% of the revenue from cannabis sales go directly toward statewide mental health funding.

We also agree with Sheriff Hain that another key factor in preventing gun violence is assuring that law enforcement has the tools and technology they need to solve crimes – which is why we supported over $200 million in new funding for law enforcement. In fact, this Act provides further protection to our law enforcement as assault rifles, extended magazines, and rapid-fire modifications put law enforcement at particular risk. A statewide ban of assault weapons, high capacity magazines, and switches protects and supports our police.

We are concerned that the sheriff’s statement will create confusion as we work to implement the law over the coming months. Despite what the sheriff would like you to believe this Act puts forth negotiated provisions to protect law abiding gun owners: it is not a gun grab. The law does not require the seizure of assault weapons and large capacity magazines. Nor does it dictate that the sheriff’s department go door to door checking FOID cards and gun cabinets.

Instead, the Act gives law-abiding gun owners over 300 days to apply for an endorsement on their FOID cards that will ensure that they lawfully keep any assault-style weapons that were lawfully purchased and possessed prior to January 11, 2023.

Illinoisans have experienced too much gun violence, with impacts that go beyond the devastating loss of life or physical injury. Lingering trauma destroys us from within and to force our constituents to endure these effects is negligent and reprehensible. By banning the sale and distribution of assault weapons, high-capacity ammunition magazines, and switches in Illinois, the Protect Illinois Communities Act makes our schools, parades, grocery stores, places of worship, and workplaces safer from the gun violence that is a threat to our wellbeing everywhere.

We intend to work collaboratively with the Illinois State Police, the Governor’s Office, the Attorney General, the Kane County Sheriff, and local law enforcement to ensure that this life-saving law is successfully implemented. We invite Sheriff Hain to contact us directly with his concerns and questions as we move forward cooperatively, in the interest of community safety.

Sincerely,
Rep. Barbara Hernandez, 50th District
Rep. Maura Hirschauer, 49th District
Rep. Anna Moeller, 43rd District
Rep. Suzanne Ness, 66th District

To the People of DuPage County:

We are the 16 Illinois State Senators and Representatives that represent the overwhelming majority of you and your families in DuPage County. Like so many concerned individuals who have contacted us in recent days, we are dismayed and angered by the recent pronouncement by the DuPage County Sheriff to unilaterally direct his office to flout and disregard the duly passed and signed Protect Illinois Communities Act. The Sheriff has no authority to determine the constitutionality of a law–that is up to the courts. Nor can he pick and choose which laws to enforce; he must enforce them all.

This bipartisan law was the product of hundreds of hours of negotiations and advocacy from across our shared community and constituents. It will fight the senseless barrage of gun violence that has plagued our state for far too long. By banning the sale and distribution of assault weapons, high-capacity ammunition magazines, and switches in Illinois, the Act makes our schools, neighborhoods, parades, grocery stores, and workplaces safer from the gun violence that is a threat to our wellbeing everywhere.

The DuPage County Sheriff’s intention to violate his sworn duty to uphold our state’s laws is a dereliction of duty and puts our safety at risk. The Sheriff’s words send a clear message that lawbreakers are welcome here. Should any related tragedy occur within our borders, not only will he bear responsibility for the resulting and everlasting scars upon our community, but he also will put our livelihoods and property tax dollars at risk, as his declaration now opens us up to financial liability.

Please know that even if the DuPage County Sheriff will not do his job to protect you, we as your Illinois Senators and Representatives are already doing so with the full weight of our offices. We are working closely with the Illinois State Police, the Governor’s Office, the Attorney General, and additional levels of state and local government and law enforcement to ensure that we will fill the void left when the sheriff abandoned his duty to protect our community. We will never abandon the constituents that we have sworn to serve, not only in DuPage County, but for the whole state.

Sincerely,

Senator Laura Ellman, 21st District
Senator Laura Murphy, 28th District
Senator Suzy Glowiak Hilton, 23rd District
Senator Rachel Ventura, 43rd District
Senator Karina Villa, 25th District
Rep. Dagmara Avelar, 85th District
Rep. Diane Blair-Sherlock, 46th District
Rep. Terra Costa Howard, 42nd District

Rep. Barbara Hernandez, 50th District
Rep. Norma Hernandez, 77th District
Rep. Maura Hirschauer, 49th District
Rep. Stephanie Kifowit, 84th District
Rep. Jenn Ladisch Douglass, 45th District
Rep. Michelle Mussman, 56th District
Rep. Anne Stava-Murray, 81st District
Rep. Janet Yang Rohr, 41st District

from WGEM

Maura was recently interviewed on HB5855, which includes an assault weapons ban similar to her bill introduced earlier this year. It includes some changes as well as other provisions to help keep communities safer.

View on WGEM.com


(Other ads, links, and articles on the below embedded content are from WGEM site and not affiliated with Representative Hirschauer or her office.)

The Protect Illinois Communities Act Is a logical, necessary step to reduce the harm from assault weapons and large capacity magazines. We owe it to all whose lives have been irreversibly touched by gun violence.

Op-Ed By  State Rep. Maura Hirschauer (Click here to read in the Chicago Sun Times)

Before I was a state representative, I was a volunteer and community leader with Moms Demand Action. My work with that organization informs my daily commitment to making sure that no parent drops their children off at school and fears they might not see them alive again, and that no person looks for active shooters in the grocery aisle, church pew or parade route.

When I took office, I promised to honor the lives lost and changed by gun violence with action — the action that drove me to run for office in the first place. It is why I filed HB5522 back in January. After the mass shooting in Highland Park, I recommitted myself to banning assault-style weapons and large capacity magazines.

I am proud to co-sponsor the new gun reform package that will keep Illinois on the path to leading the nation in gun safety. The Protect Illinois Communities Act Is a logical, necessary step to reduce the harm caused by gun violence. Now more than ever, we must see change. We owe it to all whose lives have been irreversibly touched by gun violence.

More than 110 Americans are killed by guns each day, and the wide availability of high-capacity assault weapons extends this danger beyond reason. I respect the right of Illinoisans to bear arms and protect their families, but no one needs to wield a weapon capable of firing 30 bullets in 10 seconds to feel secure in their home. There is no reason for assault weapons, whose sole purpose is to kill efficiently and effectively, to be available in Illinois. Yet these weapons of war have made their way onto our streets and into our schools, grocery stores, workplaces and community celebrations. 

Another sad truth is that young people ages 18 to 20 commit gun homicides at three times the rate of those over 21. Far too often, young people suffering from mental illness are able to access weapons that turn their darkest thoughts into a nightmarish reality. Putting killing machines into their hands is reckless endangerment.

Children and teens are actively targeted in the marketing of firearms, despite the gun industry’s clear knowledge of the risk factors of gun ownership by young people. Guns are not toys or video game controllers. It is irresponsible to treat them as such. We must close the loophole that allows young people to obtain firearms before they understand the gravity and potential consequences of that decision. 

Although Illinois’ current laws continue to be weakened by those in neighboring states that refuse to take action for gun safety, we aren’t helpless to fight back. We can reduce the flow of incoming illegal weapons by empowering the Illinois State Police to work with federal and local officials to trace illegal guns and hold straw purchasers accountable. Giving law enforcement the tools and technology to track illegal crime guns while simultaneously strengthening the laws on our books is essential to keep guns out of the wrong hands. 

The ripple effect of gun violence can be felt all across Illinois, from Chicago to Highland Park to Aurora to East St. Louis. The trauma from gun violence is disproportionately felt by Black Illinoisans, who are 32 times more likely than white Illinoisans to die by gun homicide. Guns are the leading cause of death of Illinois children ages 1-17 years old. Throughout the pandemic, Illinois led the country in gun sales, and today there are more guns in Illinois households than ever before, leaving our children at risk. We cannot ignore the fact that the rise in gun violence is related to easy access to firearms.

Children are being killed and families torn apart while lawmakers allow their hands to be tied by the gun lobby. The outsized influence of the NRA has endangered us all for far too long, and it is high time we stood up to their bullying. If legislators have the courage to stand up to the NRA and ban weapons of war from our streets, we can move closer to making Illinois a state where no one has to live in fear of being gunned down in their community.

This goes far beyond partisan politics. We have a moral obligation to fight for this change. 

We’ve reached a flashpoint, beyond which to do nothing is to be complicit in avoidable and unacceptable tragedy. Enough is enough. We must pass the Protect Illinois Communities Act.

Rep. Hirschauer Named to Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group

WEST CHICAGO, Ill. — State Rep. Maura Hirschauer, D-Batavia, will continue her fight to get weapons of war off our streets as a member of the new House Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group.

“No one should feel unsafe on a trip to the grocery store, sitting in a classroom, attending a parade or simply living their lives. Yet too often, gun violence turns these seemingly-harmless situations deadly, stealing the lives of innocent people,” Hirschauer said. “We must use our anger and grief to take action and make sure mass shootings and everyday gun violence become relics of the past. Gun violence is a public health crisis that we must address.”

In the aftermath of the Fourth of July shooting in Highland Park, Hirschauer and colleagues on the Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group will work with stakeholders and community advocates to propose meaningful legislative solutions to curb gun violence and improve public safety.

Hirschauer’s placement on the Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group is a continuation of her work to promote gun safety and gun control measures. She recently took part in a meeting with White House leaders on state-level action to hold gun manufacturers accountable for their role in mass shootings. She has also sponsored bills to create a firearm registry and ban assault weapons statewide.

“Illinois has the power and momentum to take strong legislative action to prevent gun violence and keep our families and communities safe, and I look forward to collaborating with my colleagues and other stakeholders to craft a shared response to address gun violence and firearm safety,” Hirschauer said. “Gun violence is a complex public safety issue that calls for multifaceted solutions, and I am confident the work of the House Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group will inform and inspire meaningful change for our communities.”

For more information on Hirschauer’s legislative agenda, please visit www.ilga.com or contact her office at office@repmaura49.com.

Rep. Maura HirschauerRep. Hirschauer Named to Firearm Safety and Reform Working Group

(D-Batavia)
49th District

Springfield Office:
276-S Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-1653

District Office:
946 Neltnor Blvd #108
West Chicago IL 60185