Philadelphia Must Pay $1.4 Million For Leaking CCW Applicants’ Info
Russ Chastain 07.24.14
A class action suit against the city of Philadelphia has been settled in favor of the class, which consisted of people who had applied for (and been denied) a License to Carry Firearms. The city publicly posted the names and other personal information of 3,265 applicants whom they had denied, potentially putting them at risk of being targeted by criminals.
The settlement, which totals $1.425 million, will not provide a lot for victims of its poor policy, but it will pay something. And although the city didn’t admit to any wrongdoing in the settlement, it has agreed to make some changes in its policies. Applications must now be processed within 45 calendar days rather than 45 business days, and other changes are to be made as well. Among them are an agreement to refrain from disclosing future applicants’ information, and they will no longer ask for personal references nor pry into whether an applicant is a gun owner.
The personal information of 2,188 CCW applicants was posted on the city’s website; each of those people will receive $450. A database of information on 1,077 other applicants was openly available to city personnel; each of those victims will get $25.
Joshua Prince, an attorney for the plaintiffs, said that there is some leverage if the city fails to comply with the terms of the settlement: “If they fail to comply, we can go in and file for contempt of court.”
The settlement also stipulates that any class settlement funds that haven’t been collected within 90 days of the beginning of the payout is to be equally dispersed between the School District of Philadelphia and two NRA programs (Civil Rights Defense Fund and Eddie Eagle).