Credit: Glock/Facebook

New York Lawmakers Propose ‘Glock’ Ban

New York lawmakers are singling out Glock, arguing that the Austrian gunmaker’s pistols are too easy to convert into machine guns.

A New York state senator filed a bill this week to ban the sale of pistols that can easily be converted into machine guns. With the measure, Sen. Zellnor Myrie and the bill's supporters are singling out the company Glock, arguing that the Austrian gunmaker's pistols are too easy to modify for full auto fire.

Citing the frequent recovery of illegally converted Glocks by law enforcement, Myrie said in a statement his proposal would be a "historic, first-in-the-nation law that holds reckless and irresponsible gun companies accountable for their inaction." Myrie's bill would amend New York's law by redefining a "machine gun" to also mean any "pistol converter" or "convertible pistol."

Glock's critics say the company has ignored calls for it to alter its design to make it more difficult to convert Glock pistols into machine guns. They argue that criminals can make the conversion using a screwdriver and a $25 trigger component dubbed a "Glock Switch."

State and federal authorities across the country have been warning about Glock Switches for almost a decade. Authorities say the device is easy to obtain online or just as easily be made with a 3D printer. Since 2019, federal agents have recovered more than 31,000 conversion devices.

While bans on Glock switches are not unusual — states across the country, including some with permissive gun laws, such as Indiana and Alabama, have advanced efforts to ban such items — pressuring Glock to take action is new.

Nick Suplina, the senior vice president of law and policy at the gun control advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety, said Glock has "refused to take action to fix the problem it created" by continuing to sell easy-to-convert firearms. "After decades of turning a blind eye, allowing their handguns to be converted into illegal machine guns, it's time to take action or pay the price," Suplina added.

In March, lawyers with Everytown filed a lawsuit against Glock on behalf of the city of Chicago and made the very same arguments used to justify the New York bill. The lawsuit alleges Glock, by failing to alter its handgun design, is using unfair business practices and acting negligently.

The pro-gun group Gun Owners of America blasted its members with an alert on Wednesday, arguing New York lawmakers are targeting major gun companies and banning their products "to initiate the framework for a complete ban, and total confiscation of semi-automatic handguns."