A new version of Maryland’s Firearm Safety Storage Requirements and Youth Suicide Prevention bill became known as “Jaelynn’s Law” a few years back. Despite being a significant proposal, the bill is still stuck in the House Judicial Proceedings Committee. The bill has been in work for nearly a decade now, and most questions around it have been cleared. In 2020, Maryland Senate passed a version of it, but soon the session closed early due to COVID. Now it is waiting to be voted on.
Why Did The Bill Become Affiliated With Jaelynn Willey?
Jaelynn Willey was a 16-year-old girl tragically shot by her former boyfriend in 2018. Jaelynn’s former boyfriend, Austin Rollins, had been stalking and harassing her for a while. On March 20, 2018, he brought his father’s 9 mm Glock handgun to Great Mills High School in St. Mary’s County and fatally shot Jaelynn in the head. After that, he shot himself too and died due to the bullet.
At the time of the shooting, Austin was 17-years-old. Due to Austin’s age, his father did not face any charges for keeping the firearm in a place that was accessible to Austin.
What Are the Current Child Access Prevention Laws, and What Does the Bill Propose?
The child access prevention law in Maryland is only applicable if the minor is 15 years or younger. The punishment for a conviction is a simple misdemeanor charge and a fine of up to $1,000. The bill has proposed that in cases where the guardian has been careless about storing the firearm, the maximum age limit should be 17 years. It also states that the potential fine should be higher and the possibility of jail time for the guardian depending on the consequences. If the firearm is stored poorly, but no one accesses it, the bill states 90 days in jail penalty and a fine of $1000. In a case where minor access the poorly stored firearm and proceeds to harm themselves or others, the bill states up to three years in jail and a fine of $5000.
Importance of This Bill
According to Attorney Oleg Fastovsky “It is a tough decision to make to charge an already grieving parent. Parents are generally careful with firearms, but the addition of jail time and a higher fine can reduce the cases we are seeing. It will help ensure that people who are not as careful will now become more attentive to how they store firearms. Nobody should lose a child due to their own or someone else’s negligence, and if new laws fix this, then that should be done.”
Studies have shown that such laws help decrease suicide and unintentional gun deaths by 54%. This is an essential statistic as an increase in suicides has been noted recently. The Centers for Disease Control observed a 22% rise in suicide attempts in children between 12 to 17 during the summer of 2019-2020.
The bill would also require the Deputy Secretary for Public Health Services to develop and release a publicly available guide to encourage practices to store firearms safely and prevent suicide in youths.
If this bill gets approved, Maryland will join states like California and Massachusetts that also have jail time as a punishment for cases where a guardian fails to comply with the state’s laws regarding the safe storage of firearms.
Lately, the House Judiciary Committee members have had their hands full as they focus on passing an impactful “ghost gun” bill through this session. This bill will prevent the proliferation of untraceable weapons. However, they should not have to choose between these two bills and should work to pass both bills before any more innocent lives are lost.
Shielding Lives and Assets – Fire Watch Protections in America
Fire safety is a matter of utmost importance in the United States. Fire watch protection is an invaluable service that can prevent and mitigate fires from escalating, saving lives and assets. Fire watch protection involves a guard actively patrolling a property to detect and prevent potential fire hazards before they become an issue. This article will provide an overview of fire watch protections in America, focusing on the services available, the role of firefighters, and the benefits of fire watch services.
Fire Watch Protections
Fire watch protections are crucial for safeguarding lives and assets in America. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) mandates that every commercial building should have a functional fire alarm system, an automatic sprinkler system, and fire extinguishers. However, there are times when these safety measures fail or get damaged due to construction work or maintenance activities. In such cases, temporary fire watch protections become necessary.
Temporary fire watch protections require trained personnel to monitor the building’s premises 24/7 until the primary safety systems are fully operational again. This is particularly important for high-rise buildings where the evacuation process takes time and may pose a challenge during emergencies. Moreover, the presence of trained personnel on-site ensures that any potential hazards can be identified early on and dealt with before they escalate.
In conclusion, implementing proper fire watch protections is essential in ensuring the safety of people and property in America. It not only complies with NFPA standards but also provides peace of mind to building owners, managers, employees, and visitors alike knowing that there are efficient emergency response plans in place if an unfortunate situation arises.
The Need for Fire Watch Services
Fire watch services are becoming increasingly important to protect lives and assets in America. When businesses or buildings are undergoing construction or repairs, the fire sprinkler systems may be temporarily out of order, leaving the building vulnerable to fire damage. Fire watch services provide a temporary solution by employing trained personnel who remain on site to detect and prevent fires.
In addition to construction sites, fire watch services are also necessary for buildings that have experienced power outages or other malfunctions that could disable their fire safety systems. Fires can occur at any time and without warning, so it is vital to have someone on hand who can quickly respond and alert authorities if necessary.
Overall, investing in fire watch services is a small price to pay compared to the potential cost of property damage or loss of life caused by a preventable fire. With proper planning and implementation of these preventative measures, businesses and individuals can rest easy knowing they are doing everything possible to keep themselves and others safe from harm.
Safety Regulations & Standards
Fire watch is a critical fire protection service that ensures the safety of lives and assets in America. One of the primary reasons why fire watch services are essential is because they help detect fire hazards before they cause significant damage. During a fire watch, trained personnel patrol designated areas to identify potential risks and address them promptly. This process involves inspecting electrical equipment, flammable materials, and other potential sources of ignition.
To ensure adequate protection for lives and property during a fire watch operation, it’s essential to adhere to specific safety regulations and standards. These regulations provide guidelines on how to conduct fire watches effectively while minimizing risks associated with firefighting activities. For instance, OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) has established standard 1910.157 that outlines requirements for portable firefighting equipment accessibility in workplaces.
In conclusion, adhering to safety regulations and standards during a fire watch operation can significantly enhance the efficiency of firefighting efforts while reducing the risk of injury or loss of life. It’s crucial to work with certified professionals who understand these guidelines so that you can be confident in their ability to protect your assets effectively.
Potential Challenges & Solutions
One of the major challenges faced by fire watch protection companies in America is the high demand for their services during peak seasons. During these periods, there is often a shortage of skilled professionals to carry out necessary tasks like monitoring alarm systems, patrolling buildings, and maintaining firefighting equipment. This often results in delays and gaps in coverage which can be detrimental to businesses and property owners. To mitigate this challenge, fire watch protection companies can invest in training programs for their staff or partner with recruitment firms to ensure they have access to a pool of qualified personnel.
Another potential challenge for fire watch protection firms is the issue of compliance with regulations set by local and federal authorities. These regulations often require that certain standards are met regarding equipment maintenance, emergency response plans, and employee training. Failure to comply with these regulations could lead to fines or legal repercussions that could harm the reputation and financial stability of the company. To overcome this challenge, fire watch protection firms need to stay up-to-date on changes in regulations through continuous education and collaboration with industry associations such as The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Additionally, they should invest resources into ensuring that their policies and procedures align with regulatory requirements.
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