The National Shooting Sports Foundation is kicking off a “S.A.F.E. Summer” effort to focus attention on the importance of safe firearm storage, particularly while children are home from school and more likely to be unattended.
The NSSF has pledged an additional $1 million to provide half a million free firearm safety kits, including a gun lock, to firearms owners throughout the U.S. as part of the campaign.
NSSF is implementing S.A.F.E. Summer to further spread the message of Project ChildSafe and help prevent firearm accidents, theft and misuse. With “SAFE” serving as an acronym for Secure your firearms when not in use; Be Aware of those around you who should not have unauthorized access to guns; Focus on your responsibility as a firearm owner and Educate yourself and others about safe firearm handling and storage, the effort is focused on providing education and tools that helps gun owners take responsible action to keep their families and communities safer.
“Our primary message is that if you own a firearm, respect it and secure it,” says Steve Sanetti, NSSF president and CEO. “Proper storage is the number one way to help prevent firearm accidents in the home; it has an instant effect in making homes and communities safer, and saves lives. If you can’t or won’t accept that responsibility, we strongly urge you not to own a firearm.”
NSSF will continue working in partnership with local law enforcement agencies throughout the nation to distribute the kits, and is currently planning several lock distribution events to be announced in the coming weeks. In addition, new educational materials and resources will be provided through social media and the Project ChildSafe website, starting with a new infographic designed to help firearm owners choose a safe storage option based on their lifestyle and needs.
NSSF is also launching an updated www.projectchildsafe.org on June 17 to provide more advice on proper firearm storage and mobilize responsible gun owners to help spread the Project ChildSafe message.
“We want people to know these resources are available so responsible gun owners can take action right now to help keep their firearms out of the wrong hands and become powerful voices in sharing safety messages with family members and others in their community,” Sanetti said.
NSSF launched Project ChildSafe in 1998 (prior to 2003 the program was called Project HomeSafe) as a nationwide initiative to promote firearms responsibility and provide safety education to all gun owners. While children are a focus, Project ChildSafe is intended to help young people and adults practice greater firearm safety in the home.
The program has provided more than 36 million free firearm safety kits to gun owners in all 50 states and five U.S. territories. That’s in addition to the more than 60 million free locking devices manufacturers have included with new firearms sold since 1998 and continue to do today.
Project ChildSafe was originally supported by federal grants provided by the U.S. Department of Justice. Since 2008, when this funding was cut, the firearms manufacturing industry has solely funded the Project ChildSafe program through the members of NSSF.