CENTRAL POINT, Ore. -- The Bureau of Labor and Industries plans to introduce a new bill to the Oregon Legislature that it says will help prevent gun violence. This comes after a few national retailers, including Dick's Sporting Goods and Walmart, decided not to sell guns to anyone under the age of 21.
Phil Grammatica, President of the Rogue Valley Shooting Sports Association, said thousands of people come to the shooting range and many people are between the ages of 18 and 20. He said not allowing those people to buy a gun simply because of their age wouldn't be fair.
BOLI recently sent a letter to the President of the Oregon Senate and the Speaker of the House laying out its goals with the new bill, which would be introduced during the 2019 session.
It says retail stores are generally places of public accommodation, which means they can't discriminate against someone because of their age. Things like tobacco, alcohol and marijuana don't fall into that category because they're the exceptions.
Charlie Burr, Communications Director for the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries, said this bill would add firearms to that list.
"What the law would address is giving them, giving the retailers flexibility to make policy based on a public safety interest," Burr said.
The letter said giving stores that flexibility will make public spaces safer and give people more peace of mind.
Grammatica said many of those young men and women have the right to protect our country in the military so they should be able to purchase a gun.
"And yet they would come home and not be able to possess a firearm, to practice one of the four or five things that firearms are enjoyed in this country, meaning plinking, competition, hunting, collecting, that doesn't seem fair," Grammatica said.
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