A horrible tragedy occurred this week in a Paco County, Florida home: a 12-year-old boy shot and killed his 6-year-old brother, shot his 16-year-old brother, and then shot and killed himself.
If you’re like most parents, you probably have some questions the first time your child asks to play with a new friend or in a new place. How will they be supervised? Are the TV shows and games age-appropriate? What about Internet access and pets and allergies? However, we’ve learned that there’s one important question that over half of parents never think to ask:
“Is there an unlocked gun where my child plays?”
In the United States, 1 out of 3 homes with kids have guns. Nearly 1.7 million children live in a home with an unlocked, loaded gun. Every parent knows that children are curious creatures. They like to explore, and if there’s an accessible gun in someone’s home, there’s a good chance they’ll find it. At the Brady Center, we hear stories every day where a child found a gun that parents thought was hidden or safely stored, and too often those stories end in tragedy.
Our goal is to make sure that your child is never a character in one of those stories. We believe that the simple act of asking saves kids. Before your child goes to play in a new space, take a moment to ask, “Is there an unlocked gun in the house?”
It may feel a little awkward, but it could save your child’s life.
To take the pledge or learn more about our ASK campaign, please visit askingsaveskids.org.
Take Action Now
Asking this simple question is an important step every parent can take to help keep their children safe, and possible save their child's life.