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New Yorkers Will Have to Provide Social Media Accounts in Order to Buy a Gun

Seth Wenig/AP Photo

The New York State Senate approved legislation that would ban concealed weapons from so-called "sensitive locations" and require gun buyers to provide their social media handles and character references. 


Gov. Kathy Hochul (D-NY) signed the bill saying that to her, it's "the embodiment of what it means to be an American…in honor of our Fourth of July weekend, I look forward to signing the legislation." 

With the new law, people who want to purchase a firearm license will have to provide a list of social media accounts they have maintained over the last three years, so officials can verify their "character and conduct." 

Applicants will also have to prove they have the "essential character, temperament and judgment necessary to be entrusted with a weapon and to use it only in a manner that does not endanger oneself and others." 

According to the measure, applicants will have to complete at least 16 hours of in-person training, and private businesses will be off-limits for firearms unless their owners post conspicuous signage indicating otherwise.


Hochul signed the bill into law shortly after the Democratic-controlled Legislature passed the proposal, calling it an "extraordinary session." 

This comes a week after the Supreme Court ruled in favor of gun rights, stating that rules that require residents to show a need to obtain a concealed carry permit were unconstitutional. 

The law, which will take effect on September 1, is expected to face challenges from gun advocates who disagree with having to give references in order to purchase a firearm to protect themselves. 

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