Latest Study: More than 17 Million CCW Permit Holders in U.S.

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posted on August 23, 2018
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The Crime Prevention Research Center’s (CPRC) recently released “Concealed Carry Permit Holders Across the United States: 2018” report found that despite a new norm in gun sales, the number of people getting a permit to carry for self-defense continues to climb. “In 2018, the number of concealed handgun permits soared to over 17.25 million,” it states, “a 273 percent increase since 2007.” CRPC President John R. Lott Jr. said that the numbers now show 7.14 percent of American adults have permits.

Figures from the study indicate political climate isn’t the determining factor in demand, either. “Last year, despite the common perception that growth in the number of permit holders would stop after the 2016 election, the number of permits grew by about 890,000,” the report states. “Outside the restrictive states of California and New York, about 8.63 percent of the adult population has a permit.”

Stereotypes are being defied, too. “Permits continued to grow much faster for women and minorities,” the study found. “Between 2012 and 2018, the percent of women with permits grew 111 percent faster for women and the percent of blacks with permit grew 20 percent faster than for whites. Permits for Asians grew 29 percent faster than for whites.”

The number of states with more than a million permits is now up to four—Florida, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Texas. Alabama leads the way in percentage of holders in the state at 22.1 percent, followed by Indiana at 17.9. South Dakota runs a close third at 17.2 percent.

“There were 2.7 million concealed handgun permit holders in 1999, 4.6 million in 2007, 8 million in 2011, 11.1 million in 2014, and now 17.25 million in 2018,” the study states. “The growth in permits has been continuous.”

The report also dissects other numbers and determined, “Concealed handgun permit holders are extremely law-abiding. In Florida and Texas, permit holders are convicted of misdemeanors and felonies at one-sixth of the rate at which police officers are convicted,” it explained. The trend proved true in other states where figures were publicly available.

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