Equality Florida Condemns Filing of Permitless Firearm Carry Bill

Equality Florida Condemns Filing of Permitless Firearm Carry Bill

TALLAHASSEE, FL -- Today, House Speaker Paul Renner, flanked by GOP lawmakers, announced the filing of HB 543, a bill to do away with training and permitting requirements for concealed carry of firearms in Florida. The move comes nearly seven years after 49 mostly LGBTQ people of color were murdered in the tragedy at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, weeks before the five year remembrance of the murder of 17 people at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, and just two years after firearm-related injury became the #1 cause of death for American children.

"Let's be clear-eyed: the filing of permitless carry in Florida is an endorsement of violent hate and an insult to those who have had loved ones stolen in America's gun violence epidemic," said Brandon Wolf, Equality Florida Press Secretary and Pulse Nightclub Survivor. "LGBTQ Floridians know all too well that the GOP and gun lobby's obsession with easy access to deadly weapons can take discrimination and bigotry and make it lethal. Gun violence is not abstract or hypothetical -- it is stealing our loved ones. Instead of stripping away common sense safety precautions like background checks and proficiency training, the legislature should be focused on ways to keep Floridians safe. If passed, permitless carry will cost lives."

The attack at Pulse Nightclub was a heartbreaking reminder of the way in which gun violence disproportionately impacts the LGBTQ community. In its wake, Equality Florida publicly pledged to support common sense gun safety reforms with a demonstrated record of reducing gun deaths. And in 2021, to mark five years since the tragedy, Equality Florida joined Everytown For Gun Safety, the Human Rights Campaign, and the Equality Federation in producing the Remembering and Honoring Pulse report, a comprehensive overview of the impacts of gun violence on LGBTQ people in America.


Equality Florida is the largest civil rights organization dedicated to securing full equality for Florida’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community. Through education, grassroots organizing, coalition building, and lobbying, we are changing Florida so that no one suffers harassment or discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity.


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