City of Edmonds partnering with Be SMART for Kids program on gun safety

The City of Edmonds is partnering with the Be SMART for Kids program that educates responsible adults on the importance of secure firearm storage in reducing unintentional firearm injuries and deaths.

“In recognition that June is Gun Violence Awareness Month and with the recent tragedy in Uvalde, Texas and the credible threat made here at Edmonds-Woodway High School, this an urgent reminder that gun violence prevention needs to be at the forefront of our efforts to keep our children safe,” said Edmonds Mayor Mike Nelson. “Simple steps like securely storing unloaded firearms separately from ammunition has and will prevent the loss of lives. We all can take action to prevent gun violence against our most vulnerable. The Be SMART program provides actionable steps people can take.”

The city this summer ill host several public events to provide community education in collaboration with Be SMART and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a city announcement said. Gun locks will be given out for free at these events. More details will be announced soon.

The Be SMART program was launched to raise awareness that secure gun storage—storing guns locked, unloaded and separate from ammunition—can save children’s lives. Be SMART emphasizes that it’s an adult responsibility to keep kids from accessing guns, and that every adult can play a role in keeping kids and communities safer.

SMART stands for:

Secure all guns in your home and vehicles

Model responsible behavior around guns

Ask about the presence of unsecured guns in other homes

Recognize the role of guns in suicide

Tell your peers to be SMART

The Be SMART framework is designed to help parents and adults normalize conversations about gun safety and take responsible actions that can prevent child gun deaths and injuries. Learn more at besmartforkids.org..

11 Replies to “City of Edmonds partnering with Be SMART for Kids program on gun safety”

  1. How about gun classes so kids know how to safely handle a firearm? Safe storage isn’t going to teach the kids anything. Teaching the kids target shooting is a sport and safe handling will go farther

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  2. I find it terrifying that we’re even talking about teaching kids about gun safety. It makes more sense to me that adults who handle guns get a gun license and then learn about gun safety. I will NEVER shoot a gun and neither will my kids , and I will NOT be forced to have them learn target shooting or safe handling.

    If I choose to have a car, it’s up to me to learn to drive and license it. If an adult chooses to have a gun, it should be up to them to learn to use it and license it. Families who are not responsible with guns and leave the around for kids need to get a “ticket” as drivers do.

    Don’t put gun safety on kids. Have a process to report problems.
    Gun owners have rights and so do I. I don’t want to use guns or anyone in my family to do so.

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  3. There are more guns in this country than people. Nearly half of homes in the US have a firearm and for various personal reasons, including my own. I have been an avid hunter and target shooter for years, in addition to owning a firearm for protection in the event there is a need for that. I also have young children. My firearms are locked and/or inaccessible to anyone but myself. That said, we have worked very hard to demystify guns with my children. We live in a culture where guns and violence are praised in media, be that TV, movies, video games, etc., while at the same time treating real firearms found in the home as these secret tools that are to be feared at all costs. Of course then in those terrible situation where someone finds one, especially a child, and they have had no exposure to the real item, curiosity kicks in with sometimes tragic outcomes. I do really applaud the city for providing an opportunity for families to educate themselves on safe and responsible gun ownership (both children AND what are hopefully their responsible adults), and particularly what kids should do if they ever encounter a real firearm (or something that looks like a real firearm) in their own home or a home of another family. In that same vein, this is also why we do not expose my children to any forms of media violence, and it is just as tragic what I see with some parents tolerance to what their kids are exposed to. My kids understand their are firearms in the home, they know what to do if they ever see one, and beyond that they are not interested in seeking them out. The problem is layered, and certainly understanding that guns aren’t going anywhere and equipping kids to handle encountering them in real life with maturity is one step in the right direction.

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  4. I can relate to some of fear people have regarding guns. I had major hesitation the first time I went to a gun range and ended up not even shooting that day. Having never shot a gun or been around guns, as that was not part of my family’s culture growing up, it was only after being properly educated with hands on training with a knowledgeable person, my fear regarding these inanimate objects was replaced with respect and knowledge.

    Public schools have comprehensive sex education so kids can learn in detail how to have “safe” sex. Why not add a simple gun education program to teach how to be safe around them?

    Kids who only see guns in the media, using them in games and watching movies where they are used (much of the time inaccurately and in unsafe ways), are handicapped because they don’t have all the information.

    Here’s a good place to start with your kids – giving them an awareness that guns are serious things and not something to be taken lightly.

    1) STOP! – This first step is crucial. Stopping first allows your child the time he or she needs to remember the rest of the safety instructions.

    2) Don’t Touch – A firearm that is not touched or disturbed is unlikely to be fired and otherwise endanger your child or other people.

    3) Run Away – This removes the temptation to touch the firearm as well as the danger that another person may negligently cause it to fire.

    4)Tell A Grown-up

    Dispel fear with education. That’s the best way to help keep kids safe.

    Four safety rules EVERYONE should know – gun owner or not –
    1) Treat all guns as if they are always loaded.
    2) NEVER let the muzzle point at anything you are not willing to destroy
    3)Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target and you have made the decision to shoot.
    4) Be sure of your target and what is behind it.

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    1. Yes, the steps Rebecca outlines are good for kids to know~ if they are unfortunate enough to encounter an unsecured firearm. The more important factor is for all legit and law-abiding gun owners, keep your weapons secured so that no child will ever have access.

      It’s no surprise that many of the young shooters we read about get their gun(s) from home where negligent family-members leave them laying around. Such tragedies can be avoided~ gun-owners, lock up your firearms! If you can afford a gun, you can afford a gun safe to store it in~ they are free of sales tax.

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  5. I’m wondering why there’s been absolutely no mention of the 16 year old who was arrested at Edmonds Woodway High School for “credible threats” against the school in this thread. Seems like we’re no longer shocked by this sort of thing, even in our own community.

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  6. Thanks for wise comments from multiple people, and Tom’s viewpoint of a responsible gun. I wonder if he owns assault rifles or just hunting guns. Media does overdo violence. Educating grownups from the viewpoint of responsible gun owners and discussion about exposure to violence in media can help parents. How might that happen?

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    1. Posting on behalf of Tom Kozaczynski, who is having technical difficulties:

      Theresa – the term “assault rifle” can describe a vast array of what I would consider to be common firearms. I think part of the reason we cannot get to reasonable conversations around gun control is the fear associated with specific types of weapons and how they look or features they may have, versus focusing on access to weapons in the first place. So let me say this – I own various weapons for the various shooting sports activities that I partake in, and importantly, the rules for responsible gun ownership don’t change AT ALL regardless of if you are shooting a BB gun, shotgun, handgun, or rifle (of any kind or configuration). An untouched and locked firearm is an inanimate object, and once it is in someone’s hand, it is an incredibly powerful tool that needs to be handled safely and with the respect it deserves. I hope that people see that there are in fact gun owners in the community who do truly care about making meaningful progress towards gun safety (you will see in polling that is actually the vast majority of gun owners), even if there are differences on how we get there. Hopefully the start of those conversations isn’t immediately settling into your camp and plugging your ears.

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  7. With all due respect to Tom, I think people from the reasonable center of the political spectrum have been trying to have “the conversation” since even before the Sandy Hook gun slaughter of innocent children occurred. As long as the NRA position is that all gun legislation is a slippery slope to citizen disarmament, and a few innocents getting killed every so often is the price of living in a free and armed society, with the entire Republican political party backing this viewpoint to the hilt, there will be no real conversation in the halls of Congress where the only real changes can be made. I will admit there is a current feeble attempt at some discussion relating to gun safety but is is pretty superficial. I grew up in a hunting family and was given my own shotgun at the age of 10, a bolt action three shot 20 GA. This happened after two years of carrying my grand dad’s single shot .410 CA. empty and demonstrating gun safety skill at all times before my dad would even think about having me actually armed with lethal ability.

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