Fighting Illegal Handguns
By National Crime Prevention Council
Monday, March 17, 2008; 7:00 pm
|Fighting Illegal Handguns|
Do you know someone with illegal handguns? Call 410-685-GUNS.
Help Stop the Violence
When we talk about violence, we can't ignore weapons. Nine out of ten murders involve a weapon; eight of ten involve a firearm. Most robberies involved the use of a weapon, most frequently a handgun.
One in seven teens has reported carrying weapon−like a bat, club, gun, or knife−at some time to protect themselves. Weapons make violence more deadly and less personal. A gun in the home increases the likelihood of homicide three times and the likelihood of suicide five times.
Reduce the Risk
- Think long and hard about having weapons, especially firearms, in your home. Studies show that a firearm in the home is more than forty times as likely to hurt or kill a family memeber as to stop a crime.
- Look at the other ways to protect yourself and your home. Invest in top-grade locks, jamming devices for doors and windows, a dog, or an alarm system. Start or join a Neighborhood Watch. Check with the police, the YMCA/YWCA, or the recreation department about self defense class.
- If you do choose to own firearms−handguns, rifles, or shotguns−make sure they are safely stored. That means unloaded, trigger-locked, and in a locked gun case or pistol box, with ammunition separately locked. Store keys out of reach of children, away from weapons and ammunition. Check frequently to make sure this storage remains secure.
- Obtain training from a certified instructor in firearms safety for everyone in the home. Make sure it's kept current.
- Teach your children what to do if they find a firearm or something that might be a weapon:
- Don't Touch
- Get Away
- Tell a Trusted Adult
Updated: 06/17/08; 5:19 pm