When Children And Guns Share A Home

Parents who take on the responsibility of gun ownership must also be tirelessly dedicated to keeping those guns secure. When children and guns share a home, safety must be of utmost importance. Properly store your firearms and talk to your children about gun safety.

Childproofing a Home: Steps for Gun Safety

Gun owners should take the following steps to keep their homes safe for their children:
Unload it: Before storing a gun, unload it of any ammunition.

  • Store it separately: Store the ammunition and gun in two separate places. These storage spots should be kept out of rooms where children frequently play.
  • Lock it up: Always lock up a gun. You can purchase a gun storage cabinet that keep firearms hidden, secured and locked.
  • Hide the keys: Some gun closets lock with codes, while others have keys. Keep these keys away from where children could find them, such as on a high shelf or behind another locked door.

When to Talk to Your Children About Gun Safety

There’s no perfect age for talking to your children about gun safety; every child is different. A good time to begin the discussion is when your child first shows an interest in toy guns.
Talk openly and honestly about the dangers of firearms, rather than just ordering your children to stay out of the gun closet; such orders tend to peak curiosity even further. Make the rules and consequences of guns clear.
Teach your children to not touch a gun if they happen to find one, to leave the area immediately and talk to an adult as soon as possible.
Address the differences between gun use on television and in real life. Your children may become confused when a character in a movie or TV show is shot and killed in one show but reappears in another movie or show. This blending of real life and entertainment may lessen your child’s understanding of the dangerous consequences of guns in real life.
While childproofing electrical equipment, furniture, outdoor spaces, bathrooms and kitchens, childproof your firearms–one of the most potentially dangerous aspects of your household.