We are pleased to announce our June grant has been awarded to Cable Gun Locks for Secure Gun Storage, a program to raise awareness that secure gun storage can save children's lives. The program emphasizes that it is an adult's responsibility to keep kids from accessing guns and that every adult plays a role in keeping kids, schools, and communities safer.
Through their research, we know that guns are now the leading cause of death for children in the United States. A staggering number of children (4.6 million across the US) live in a home with at least one loaded, unlocked gun. We know from our conversations with the St. Paul Police Department that many guns are not secured in transit and that incidents of gun theft from vehicles are on the rise and greatly contributing to the number of illegal guns on the street. Commander Jeff Stiff of the Gangs/Guns Unit has shared that, if perpetrators break into 10 cars, they are likely to find a gun in at least one. The consequences of gun owners not securing their gun(s) endangers us all.
In our FREE presentations, we use our vast body of research to really awaken our audience to the scale and impact of unsecured guns. SMART is an acronym for all adults to use to remember the common sense strategies they can use to prevent children from having easy access to guns. In our community outreach (tabling at events, for example), we also offer printed materials and freebies to help spread the message on the importance of secure gun storage. Whether at presentations or community events, these conversations are always so impactful. Many people have relatives with guns, for example, and have never asked about their storage method. Many more know someone who isn't properly securing their guns. Having cable gun locks on hand to distribute is a quick, cost-effective way to change that. Every secured gun helps prevent child gun death or injury. Our local group gave away so many gun locks last year and need to replenish our supply.
Funded by St. Paul, MN (June 2022)