Take Action Today! House Bill 2566 will now move to Gov. Kate Brown’s desk to be signed into law. Oregon sportsmen should contact the governor today and ask her to support House Bill 2566. Make sure the governor knows that mentored hunting is safe, and has been especially effective at attracting women, girls and suburban and urban residents to hunting. Members can contact Gov. Brown either by phone at (503) 378-4582 or by email by clicking on the following link: http://www.oregon.gov/gov/Pages/share-your-opinion.aspx
The Oregon Senate has passed legislation to permit youth ages 14-16 to try hunting under the control of an experienced mentor, prior to the completion of hunter education. Oregon currently allows mentored hunting for youth ages 9-13. On May 9, the Senate voted unanimously to pass House Bill 2566. Current law already allows for anyone 18 years or older to buy a hunting license without taking hunter education, however, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife strongly recommends the course for new hunters. Unfortunately, HB 2566 does not address 17 year olds, who will be the only age groups unable to participate in mentored hunting.
The Sportsmen’s Alliance, and the other Families Afield partners (National Shooting Sports Foundation, National Wild Turkey Federation, National Rifle Association and Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation), have successfully championed mentored or apprentice hunting in 40 states since the Families Afield program was launched in 2005. The result has been more than 1.7 million licenses sold, many to suburban and urban people as well as women and girls.
Oregon Rep. Brad Witt (D-Clatskanie) originally introduced House Bill 2566, to focus on attracting adults to hunting. However, after hearing from the Sportsmen’s Alliance and the Oregon Hunters Association, Rep. Witt agreed to support an amendment to focus the bill on older teens, previously left out of the state’s mentored hunting program.
Because of the incredible safety record and the effectiveness of mentored hunting in attracting newcomers, Families Afield supports mentored hunting opportunities for people of any age, including young people with parental consent. Research has shown that mentored hunters transition to fully licensed hunting.
“We would like to thank Rep. Witt for championing language which will help recruit more youths to hunting” said Luke Houghton associate director of state services.
About the Sportsmen’s Alliance: The Sportsmen’s Alliance protects and defends America’s wildlife conservation programs and the pursuits – hunting, fishing and trapping – that generate the money to pay for them. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation is responsible for public education, legal defense and research. Its mission is accomplished through several distinct programs coordinated to provide the most complete defense capability possible. Stay connected to Sportsmen’s Alliance: Online, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.