June is Gun Violence Awareness Month, created to raise awareness of the issue of needless and senseless gun violence in our communities. The Raleigh Police Department is taking steps to reduce the number of firearm-related crime through training and education, partnering and engaging with the community, and using intelligence-led policing.
Below is some basic gun safety information from RPD.
Also, check out this video featuring Chief Cassandra Deck-Brown, I Can, You Can, We Can Prevent Gun Violence.
Firearm Safety: Rules of Safe Gun Handling
These basic rules apply to everyone and they apply always, no matter how experienced a shooter you are and no matter what the circumstances are.
- Treat all firearms as if they are loaded.
- Don’t point at or cover anything with the muzzle until ready to shoot.
- Keep your trigger finger off the trigger and outside the trigger guard until ready to shoot.
- Be certain of your target and your line of fire.
- Firearms should be unloaded when not in use.
- Don’t rely on your gun’s safety. The safety on the gun is a mechanical device which, like any such device, can become inoperable at the worst possible times.
- Safe and secure storage of your firearm is one of your most important responsibilities. You must always secure your firearm and ammunition so that they are not accessible to children or other unauthorized persons.
There are a variety of locks and safe storage containers available in the marketplace that may be appropriate for your needs. By purchasing a firearm, you have taken on the responsibility of safely securing it and preventing its unauthorized use. It is your personal responsibility to select and use whatever devices or practices that will enable you to safely secure your firearm at all times.
Keeping Kids and Teens Safe around Guns
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, roughly a third of U.S. homes with children have guns. In fact, nearly two million children live with unlocked, loaded guns. Parents may not realize what a serious injury risk a gun in the home is, especially for children.
Children and teens are naturally curious about firearms and, as a result, may be tempted to “play” with a firearm they find. Make sure young people who live in or visit your home are aware of and understand these safety guidelines:
- Make sure they know guns that are seen on television or video games are different from a gun in real life.
- Don’t go snooping, or allow other kids to go snooping, for guns in the house.
- If you find a gun in the house, or anywhere else, STOP! Do not touch it or allow anyone else to. Leave the area and be sure to immediately tell an adult.
- Even if a gun looks like a toy, don’t touch it. Some real guns look like toy guns, so don’t take a chance. Leave the area and immediately and tell an adult.
For more information go to healthychildren.org.