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Five Easy Ways to PROTECT Your Family, Community and Yourself From GUN VIOLENCE  

Just talking to your child about gun safety is not enough. Children are naturally curious and open to peer pressure. With a gun in 40% of homes with children, to keep your child safer:

Tip 1: Always ask if there is a gun in another family’s home and, if so, how it is secured, before sending your child over to play or your teen to a party. If you have doubts, invite the children to play at your house.

Tip 2: If you own a gun, secure it: Unload it, lock it up, lock ammunition in a separate lockbox, and keep the keys with you at all times.
 It will take less than a minute or two to unlock and load if needed.

- Always check to be sure there’s no bullet in the chamber before cleaning a firearm.
- When handling or cleaning, never leave a gun unattended, not even for a moment.
- Make sure that no one who is staying or living with you is keeping an unsecured firearm in your house.
- Most school shootings are committed with firearms taken from a relative’s home. Don’t let that weapon be yours.  and

Learn more gun safety tips at:

Learn more about how important gun safety is for the health of America’s youth at:

- Two thirds of all firearm-related deaths in the U.S.—over 20,000 a year—are suicides.

- Suicide is often an impulsive act spurred by a break-up, job loss, legal trouble, etc. From teens to seniors, all ages are at risk.

- 85%-90% of suicide attempts with firearms result in death.

- Less than 5% of suicide attempts using most other methods succeed, and 90% of survivors will not die by suicide later.

Tip 3: Store firearms off-site if you suspect a friend or family member may be suicidal. If that’s not possible, be sure to store firearms locked and unloaded with ammunition stored in a locked location separate from the firearm. You may well save a life.  
David C. Grossman et al., Gun Storage Practices and Risk of Youth Suicide and Unintentional Firearm Injuries, 293 JAMA 707, 711-13 (Feb. 2005). 

- For each time a gun is used in home self-defense, there are 7 assaults or murders, 11 suicide attempts, and 4 accidents involving guns in or around a home.

- A person carrying a gun is 4.5 times more likely to be shot in an assault than one not carrying.

- A woman's chances of being killed by her abuser increase over 7 times if he has access to a gun, including her own. 

 Tip 4:  Consider pepper spray or gel to defend yourself and your home or workplace instead of a firearm.
- Pepper spray causes tears, burning pain, and impaired vision and breathing, disrupting an attack and allowing you to escape to safety.  

- Pepper spray can cost as little as $10 and may be carried in many where firearms can’t.

- Be sure to watch training videos and practice before use.

Learn about pepper spray types and safety tips:

Tip 5: Don’t buy firearms for another person ever. Being a ‘straw buyer’ for a person who is not allowed to buy a weapon is a felony: Punishment can include $250,000 in fines and 10 years in prison.

- Straw purchasing is the most common way criminals get guns.

- Never buy firearms for your friend, boyfriend, husband or anyone else. A safer community starts with you.

Finally, let elected representatives know you want sensible laws to keep firearms away from criminals, abusers, and the mentally impaired. Elected officials count every call, letter or email they receive. Speak up and tell them where you stand.

We can keep our families and communities safer from gun violence today by taking simple precautions and calling for commonsense laws. Please share these tips with friends and loved ones.

Thank you for doing your part to keep our families and neighborhoods safer from gun violence. 

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