Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence
For Immediate Release: February 1, 2015
Contact: Jonathan Hutson, jhutson [at] bradymail [dot] org
WASHINGTON, DC - Our prayers are with the Albuquerque family whose toddler wounded both parents in a motel room on January 31 with a single shot from a handgun. Authorities say the three-year-old boy reached for an iPod in his mother’s purse, where he found an unlocked, loaded gun. When he fired it, the bullet hit his father’s buttock, and then struck the shoulder of his pregnant mother, who remains hospitalized. His 2-year-old sister was present but unhurt.
Every day, parents make sensible choices about family safety: we buckle our children’s seatbelts, make them wear bicycle helmets, and teach them to look both ways before crossing the street. But when it comes to gun safety, many parents do not take the same logical approach.
A gun in the home is a significant risk factor for homicide, suicide, and unintentional shootings, according to the Brady Center’s recent report “The Truth About Kids and Guns,” which shows that one out of three homes with children has guns, many left unlocked or loaded.
1.7 million children in America live with unlocked, loaded guns. Instead of protecting the family, studies show a firearm is much more likely to harm a family member, such as a child or teen, than to help.
This incident in Albuquerque serves as a reminder to all parents to keep guns locked away securely. It is also a reminder for parents to raise concerns and awareness about the dangers of unsafe access to firearms with friends, family, neighbors, and colleagues. We can all help ensure that children do not come across an unsecured gun by asking, “Is there an unlocked gun where my child plays?” Our collective efforts with parents across the United States can help prevent future tragedies.
# # #
The mission of the Brady organization is to create a safer America for all of us that will lead to a dramatic reduction in gun deaths and injuries. For more insight on gun violence prevention, follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BradyBuzz.