Firearm Safety

"Owning a gun is a personal decision, but responsible storage is a public safety issue." (Be Smart for Kids) One of the most tragic events in the home is a death or injury due to a gunshot. In the U.S. nearly one half of homes with children have guns. If you have a gun in your home, please consider these rules:

  • Never leave a gun, loaded or unloaded, unattended for any reason.
  • Use a firearm safe, lockbox, trigger, or cable lock to store firearms.
  • Always keep bullets in a separate, locked location from the gun.
  • Teach children never to touch a gun and to tell an adult if they find one.
  • Remember, children are naturally curious and still may pick up a gun if they find one, even when they know the rule-if you have a gun, keep it locked away.
  • BB guns can cause injury and death - they are not toys and should only be handled by an adult.
  • Temporarily remove firearms if a family member is depressed, suicidal or abusing drugs or alcohol.
  • Ask about guns when your child will be playing in someone else's home (even other family members' homes). Start the conversation by:
    1. Volunteer information about your home - example: "We have a pool with an alarm and locked gate; we have hunting rifles in our home, they are locked and unloaded in a safe."
    2. Ask as part of a general safety discussion - example: "Before I drop Mark off to play I just wanted to check to see if you have a pet, pool or guns in your home. I want to be sure he knows your safety rules."
    3. Remember, it's not about the gun; it's about whether it's safely secured - example: "May I ask, if you have guns in your home, are they locked and inaccessible to the kids?"
    4. Use technology if it's more comfortable - example: Text or email the conversation.