ASK. Just ASK.

18 Jun

My attention was recently called to the Ask campaign. ASK Day is on Father’s Day (June 21, 2009).

The campaign proposes that parents ask about the presence of a firearm when their kids go play in another family’s home. Seems logical, but really, if we teach our kids about firearm safety (do not touch, tell an adult, etc) shouldn’t that be enough? I don’t think so. I don’t think it’s safe to assume all other parents are raising their children in the same manner as you choose. Or that even if you know your child well, that you can estimate the amount of impulse control or safety rules another child may have in their arsenal.

This statistic shocked me:
Nearly 1.7 million children, under the age of 18, live in homes with firearms that are both loaded and unlocked in the United States

(Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Findings From the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 2002, published 2005.)

You can read more at the Ask/Speak Up site

I don’t think anyone can argue with the frightening reality of that one statistic. The risk is there and it is real, and our kids are too precious to make assumptions.

Please share the link.

Hugs all around,

2 Responses to “ASK. Just ASK.”

  1. The Informal Matriarch June 18, 2009 at 8:38 pm #

    Wow I never thought to talk about that with my kids. Of course I’m going to teach them firearm safety but I never thought to ask parents…another thing to put on the mental checklist!

  2. christinevara October 3, 2010 at 10:12 pm #

    I’m so glad to see that you included information about the ASK and SPEAK UP campaigns on your blog. As a parent of five children, I believe it is important for parents to realize that there are simple steps they can take to prevent their children from being a victim of gun violence. The same organization that sponsors the ASK and SPEAK UP campaigns has recently introduced a new initiative to reduce the number of youth suicides. Studies show that 4 out of 5 youth suicides with a gun could be avoided if the child did not have access to the gun in the first place. Unfortunately, just last week, 13 year old Asher Brown committed suicide with his stepfather’s gun after struggling with issues of bullying. If only his parents had known that having that gun in the home increased these risks significantly, perhaps Asher would still be alive. This incident, as well as countless others, suggest that it might be helpful for parents to read a follow-up blog regarding the wonderful PAX programs. Feel free to contact me for more information and thank for all you are doing to help keep our kids safe.

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