Consider the facts:
- Eleven children are killed every day by a firearm.
- Fifty percent of all childhood unintentional shooting deaths occur in the home of the victim and nearly forty percent occur in the home of a relative or friend.
- Three year old children have the coordination and strength to pull the trigger of many handguns.
- It is difficult for children under the age of eight to distinguish betwen real and toy guns.
- More teenagers die as a result of gunshot wounds than from all natural causes combined.
Protect against gun violence:
- Have a 'no guns' rule in your home.
- If you keep guns, taking certain actions can lessen the dangers. NEVER leave guns attended.
- Store and lock guns and ammunition in separate containers in separate locations. Only you should know the locations and have keys or combination.
- For a revolver, use a padlock to prevent the cylinder from closing, or use a trigger lock.
- For a pistol, use a trigger lock.
To keep your children safe when they are not at home, talk with them about the risk of gun injury. Tell them to steer clear of guns. Speak with parents of your child's friends to find out if they keep a gun. If they do, urge them to empy it and lock it up.
Source: DCFS www.state.il.us/dcfs