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Despite Reputation for Strong Gun-Control Laws, Massachusetts Refuses to Provide Mental Health Records for Federal Background Checks

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Massachusetts has a good reputation with strong gun-control laws – until it comes to mental health records.

The Boston Globe reported Monday that a 43-year-old law prohibits the state from sharing mental health records with the FBI database for gun background checks.

The FBI processed about 1.6 million background checks of Massachusetts residents since 1999 without having access to mental health records, according to the Globe.

Although some state officials warn about the dangers of mentally ill people carrying guns, the state Legislature has rejected two efforts by Gov. Deval Patrick to make the records available.

“You have to have state legislation to authorize the release of that information,” Patrick told the Globe. “I’ve filed legislation in the past, and I filed it again last week.”


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