Obama announces new steps to reduce gun violence

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Barack Obama is announcing new steps to reduce gun violence, mainly by helping manufacturers understand what law enforcement agencies need from so-called smart guns.

Smart guns are firearms that use technology designed to prevent accidental shootings or help find a missing gun.

In a Facebook post Friday, Obama also announced a new rule to ensure that federal mental health records about people who shouldn’t have a gun are shared with the background check system.

Obama unveiled a plan last January to expand background checks for gun purchases. At the time, he directed the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security and Justice to conduct or sponsor research into smart-gun technology.

He also instructed the agencies to regularly review the availability of such technology and to promote its use.

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