AKTI and its members have successfully educated legislators on knife issues and supported positive changes on behalf of all knife users. We promote reasonable, responsible legislation and measured non-partisan efforts to resolve issues. Being successful in changing laws is always a team effort. We thank the many elected officials, other organizations, and individuals who have been a part of the successes of removing and improving knife laws in the U.S.
To ensure that the knife industry thrives and grows, AKTI addresses common issues for our members, including anti-counterfeiting, social media censorship, Proposition 65, etc. Below are just the major highlights of AKTI’s work to advocate for the entire knife community.
- 2022 – Pennsylvania becomes the 45th state that allows automatic knives. AKTI launches a social media censorship initiative to address issues the knife community is having with closed accounts and rejected ads. AKTI hosted an Industry Celebration event at the Blade Show, honoring Les de Asis with the AKTI Industry Integrity Award posthumously. Virginia automatic knife repeal was successful thanks to AKTI member Blue Ridge Knives.
- 2021 – Industry brands began supporting AKTI with Carry With Confidence giveaways. Ohio success that automatic knives are now legal to manufacture and sell. The role of AKTI’s anti-counterfeiting committee’s focus expanded to focus on other industry issues and concerns. AKTI submitted a request that Proposition 65 proposed changes be withdrawn.
- 2020 – While legislative activity was stalled due to the COVID pandemic, AKTI provided valuable information to members for dealing with the implications to their business of the coronavirus. Urged states and localities to consider the knife and tool industry as essential and critical. The “AKTI Career Center” was opened on AKTI’s website to connect knife industry jobs. The State Knife Law and Statewide Knife Preemption information was updated and expanded. The annual “Free to Carry” auction was moved to an online auction. AKTI continued its partnership with the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation and the National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses to increase interactions with legislators. Statewide knife preemption was enacted in West Virginia.
- 2019 – Successfully enacted statewide knife preemption and removed the prohibition on an automatic knife in Montana. Reintroduced the Interstate Transport Act and the Freedom of Commerce Act (federal switchblade repeal) in the Senate. In Vermont a bill to repeal automatic prohibitions was introduced. Work with New York Legal Aid Society and others to change New York State gravity knife law. Expert articles on brand protection and intellectual property toolkit started on AKTI’s website. Since 2009 AKTI has continued its support of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation. Issued warning regarding a New York State amendment.
- 2018 – AKTI’s Interstate Commerce Act passed the U.S. Senate by Unanimous Consent. We made tremendous progress on this legislation which will give traveling knife owners federal protection they have never had before from varying knife laws, but it was stalled due to politics in the U.S. House of Representatives. Key Senate staffers received the AKTI Common Sense Award. AKTI supported a Louisiana bill to remove restrictions on automatic knives. Attended and Supported Sportsman-Legislator Summit of state legislators and industry leaders. Senator Joe Manchin was presented with AKTI’s “Common Sense Award.” At the Blade Show AKTI event, Goldie Russell was awarded the AKTI Industry Integrity Award for her dedication and contributions to the industry.
- 2017 – AKTI introduced the Freedom of Commerce Act, sponsored by Senator Crapo, to repeal the restrictions imposed by the Federal Switchblade Act of 1958. Senator Crapo was awarded with AKTI’s “Common Sense Award.” On behalf of AKTI, Senators Enzi and Wyden reintroduced legislation to protect traveling knife owners with a new bill titled the Interstate Transport Act. Successful in Colorado in removing automatic and gravity knife restrictions. Worked with Michigan State Police Association to successfully make automatics legal in Michigan. AKTI committee was formed to address the issue of counterfeit knives. The “Free to Carry” fundraiser at the Blade Show was the second very successful giving-back fundraiser event.
- 2016 – AKTI’s First “Giving Back Event” was a resounding success! Supported a successful California case with a legal brief that lock-back knives are not illegal daggers. Worked with West Virginia Citizens Defense League allowing knife users to lawfully carry a knife, open or concealed, without a permit. The Blade Show and F+W were presented with AKTI’s Industry Integrity Award for their contributions in working with AKTI to institute policies on counterfeiting, trademark infringement, and intellectual property.
- 2015 – AKTI supported Maine legislation to make automatic knives legal, Nevada pro-knife legislation, Texas knife preemption, and Montana pro-knife legislation. Senators Mike Enzi and Ron Wyden were awarded AKTI’s “Common Sense Award” for their efforts on the Interstate Transport Act.
- 2014 – Interstate Transport Act introduced for AKTI by Senator Mike Enzi and Senator Ron Wyden (originally called Knife Owner’s Protection Act). Reliable, accurate, and regularly updated state law information became available on AKTI’s website. Automatic knives became legal in Tennessee.
- 2013 – Michigan, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, Indiana, Tennessee, New York, Texas, and Vermont were added as states considering removing restrictions or adding pro-knife laws. AKTI began work in New York to clarify that one-hand opening knives are not illegal gravity knives. Wyoming Senator Mike Enzi agreed to sponsor legislation for AKTI to protect traveling knife owners. Supported Alaska legislation to legalize automatic knives and enact knife preemption and Indiana to allow automatics.
- 2012 – Pro-knife legislation incorporating bias toward closure, clarifying one-hand opening knives are not gravity or automatic/switchblade knives, allowing the manufacture of automatics or enacting knife preemption introduced in Louisiana, Washington, South Carolina, and Alaska. Worked with TSA on the possibility of knives back inside airplanes. Received the Blade Show’s Industry Achievement Award
- 2011 – AKTI Successfully Opposed Washington State Carrying Bill – A bill making carrying a concealed knife with blades 3.5 inches and longer a misdemeanor withdrawn.
- 2010 – AKTI Supports Rep. Jenn Coffey’s New Hampshire HB 544 – New Hampshire is now the freest knife law state in the U.S. Kansas Adopts AKTI’s Bias Toward Closure Language – Ordinary pocket knives cannot be mistaken for illegal automatics.
- 2009 AKTI Saves Folding Knives from U.S. Customs’ Action – AKTI successfully fought a proposed U.S. Customs re-definition of switchblades that would have included all folding knives, impacted interstate commerce, and made de facto criminals of millions of knife owners. AKTI Texas Bill Signed – assisted-opening and one-hand opening knives are not switchblades
- 2008 AKTI SC Bill Accepted – keeps law-abiding citizens from being criminals for carrying knives with blades over 2 inches.
- 2007 AKTI wins CA Appellate Decision – confirmed one-hand opening knives are not switchblades. AKTI saves 1 million Arkansas knife owners and visitors – you’re no longer a criminal in Arkansas if you carry a knife with a blade longer than 3-1/2 inches.
- 2004 AKTI opposes New York City knife busts – provided information for law enforcement and gave materials and attorney information to retailer defendants.
- 2001 AKTI saves 2 million Boston knife owners and visitors – opposed 2-1/2″ blade-length standard. AKTI bill saves 12 million Californians – 653k exempts one-hand openers in switchblade statute.
For more information on AKTI’s initiatives and programs, view the News and History sections.