Maine Medical Association Supports Question 3

AUGUSTA — The Maine Medical Association has announced its support for requiring background checks for all gun sales, an initiative that will appear as Question 3 on November’s ballot.

“The Maine Medical Association has a long-standing policy of supporting common-sense public policy that will reduce gun violence,” said Dr. Charles Pattavina, a Bangor emergency physician and president of the Maine Medical Association. “Our organization supports background checks for all gun sale transactions, including private sales. Background checks are effective at reducing death and injuries from firearms, and they help keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. Question 3 contains some broad exemptions, particularly for family members, but we strongly support it as a step in the right direction.”

The Maine Medical Association’s support for background checks dates back to a resolution of the membership in 2000, and that position was reaffirmed in 2007 and again in 2012.

In states that require background checks for all gun sales, 48 percent fewer police officers are killed with handguns, 46 percent fewer women are killed by their domestic partners, and 48 percent fewer people die by gun suicide. While no single initiative will take care of the whole problem, background checks are a significant positive action that Maine can take.

The Maine Medical Association supports the passage of Question 3 to ensure that background checks are required for all gun sales in Maine.

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