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Wisconsin Senate OKs Blind Hunting Permits

March 26, 1988

MADISON, Wis. (AP) _ Despite some misgivings, Wisconsin state senators have approved a measure allowing blind people to hunt deer and other game if accompanied by a sighted hunter.

″Do we really want people out there shooting guns when they don’t know where they’re shooting?″ Sen. Alan Lasee asked during debate Friday night. ″As much as I have empathy for the visually handicapped, I don’t believe I can support this.″

Sen. Brian Rude supported the proposal and noted that the Department of Natural Resources can issue licenses to handicapped hunters.

People confined to wheelchairs are allowed to shoot or hunt from an automobile parked off a highway and more than 50 feet from the center of a roadway, he said.

The bill extends eligibility for a special permit to people who present medical evidence that they are unable to hunt alone because of a permanent physical disability or handicap, including blindness.

Under the measure, a visually handicapped hunter would have to be accompanied by someone who could assist in sighting the firearm.

A 27-6 vote sent the measure to Gov. Tommy G. Thompson.

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