Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A Message from Ceasefire Oregon Regarding CHL Privacy

A Message from Ceasefire Oregon regarding HB 4045B
Halt Concealed Handgun License Privacy Invasions

To: Oregon Senate Republicans and the Oregon Gun Lobby
Copy to: Oregon Senate Democrats

We don’t usually see eye-to-eye with you on issues related to firearms. But when it comes to extending reasonable privacy to Oregon holders of concealed handgun licenses (CHLs), we’re willing to meet you halfway. We’ll show you how to reduce the requests for CHL data by over 50%.

Just Do Nothing.

Why? Because over 50% of the requests for CHL data received by Oregon sheriffs in the last five years came from the Oregon Republican Party, the Oregon Senate Republicans, and gun advocacy organizations, including Oregon Gun Owners, the Oregon Firearms Federation, and the Oregon State Rifle Association. If you don’t think those records should be made available under the Oregon Public Records Law, just stop requesting them.
. . . . .
Last year, Ceasefire Oregon asked the sheriffs in all 36 counties to tell us what requests they had received for concealed handgun license records in the last five years. We wanted to know whether those records were being accessed for criminal, harassment, or other improper purposes. The result? There was no evidence of any request for CHL records for malicious purposes.

  •  41% (18 requests) came from gun advocacy organizations
  •  36% (16 requests) came from newspapers
  •  11% (5 requests) came from Republican politicians (the Oregon Republican Party and the Oregon Senate Republican Office) 

The few individuals requesting information included a stalking victim, a family member, an ex-spouse, and an employer. Ceasefire Oregon believes that CHL records should remain available to these people.

Ceasefire Oregon also strongly believes that CHL records should remain open to the press, so they can ask the hard questions about government, guns, personal freedom, and public safety. At its heart, HB 4045B is little more than an effort to reign in a free press.

So let’s compromise. You let the press continue to do its job, and we’ll let you stop asking for the CHL records you say should be private.