Safety is the standout focus of several new and amended laws in 2019 – particularly gun safety and child safety.
One new law will require children under the age of two to be strapped in to a rear-facing car seat.
“The American Academy of Pediatrics has determined that a child in a child-safety seat facing backwards is actually safer in a crash or accident because the shell of the seat supports the neck and head of the child better than if the child was facing forward,” said Mike Son, public information officer for the Naperville Police Department.
That change doesn’t apply if the child is over 40 inches tall or heavier than 40 pounds.
Another new law requires schools to conduct at least one law enforcement-led drill to address an active shooter situation.
“It sounds like we’ll still be able to allow the schools to run the drill just like they would a tornado drill or any other type of safety drill. It just specifies that law enforcement will be there to oversee the drill,” said Son. “So I think that’s going to be something that we work out on an individual basis with the schools in the future.”
Other safety measures will include criminal background checks for carnival workers and a 72-hour waiting period for all firearm purchases.
“Basically that law extends the waiting period for when a firearm is sold and it also now includes all firearms. The previous law I believe did not apply to certain type of weapons like rifles and weapons such as that. But the new law is going to say you have to hold any firearm you sell for 72 hours,” said Son.
There are a few exceptions to that law such as if the purchaser is a law enforcement officer or a federally-licensed dealer.
And while many of these laws amended previously existing laws, there are some brand new ones, such as the Firearms Restraining Order Act.
“That allows the petitioner, a family member or law enforcement, if they can show probable cause to a judge, that somebody in possession or about to take possession of a firearm is either a risk to themselves or somebody else, that judge can now issue the firearms restraining order. That prevents that person from being in possession or going out and purchasing said weapons or firearms,” said Son.
Son added that this act will give law enforcement more support via a court-order to keep guns out of hands of people who are a danger to themselves or others.
Illinois hunters will also now be allowed to wear blaze pink hunting gear as an alternative to the traditional blaze orange.
Naperville News 17’s Casey Krajewski reports.
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