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Children’s Hospital of Richmond teaches safe gun storage

As the US continues to see cases of young kids getting their hands on firearms, a new initiative aims to keep guns out of the hands of small children.
As the United States continues to see cases of young kids getting their hands on firearms, a new initiative aims to keep guns out of the hands of small children
Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 5:22 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - As the United States continues to see cases of young kids getting their hands on firearms, a new initiative aims to keep guns out of the hands of small children.

Tueaday was national ASK Day, which stands for ‘Asking Saves Kids.’ The Children’s Hospital of Richmond is teaching families about the importance of storing their guns safely.

Corri Miller-Hobbs with Safe Kids Virginia said all guns in the home should have a child-resistant lock on them and should never be anywhere a child could get access.

“They need to make sure that they unload their gun and they lock up the ammunition separately, and that the firearm goes into a separate location in a lock box,” Miller-Hobbs explained.

Around 4.6 million kids live in a home with loaded, unlocked guns, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Children’s Hospital of Richmond said it’s a gun owner’s responsibility to ensure those guns are stored safely to help prevent tragedy.

“We’ve seen a rise in the number of injuries that are occurring because kids get their hands on guns and shouldn’t,” Miller-Hobbs said.

Experts say that when your child goes over to someone’s house, you should ask them if they have guns in their home. The conversation isn’t meant to be judgmental, but they say it’s a necessary precaution that could protect your child and others.

“You can even say, ‘hey, we do have guns at my house, and I want you to know that when your child is coming over to play at our house, that this is how we lock them up,’” said Miller-Hobbs.

Lieutenant Aaron LaVigne with VCU Police says talking to your kids about what to do if they see a gun is also an important preventative measure.

“I’ve told my kids at an early age if they see one not to touch it, obviously is the first thing, and to find the closest adult, if possible, to let them know that there’s a firearm,” explained LaVigne.

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