The Arkansas chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots networks, released the following statement today celebrating the Little Rock School Board’s vote to pass a resolution which commits the district to sending home Be SMART information on the importance of securely storing firearms in the student handbook and in a letter to parents and caretakers each year. Championed through countless hours of organizing and educating from Moms Demand Action volunteers, the resolution formalizes the School Board’s commitment to keeping students safe from gun violence. The decision is the latest in a string of recent efforts by school districts across the country to educate parents and caretakers about the importance of secure firearm storage.
“This decision is a huge win for our community,” said Anna Morshedi, a volunteer with the Arkansas chapter of Moms Demand Action. “Secure firearm storage can be the difference between life and death for kids in Little Rock, and we are proud to live in a district that prioritizes the safety of our children. Normalizing secure firearm storage should be on the agenda of every school board across the country.”
Secure firearm storage in homes is one of the most effective tools to keep children and teens safe from gun violence. According to research from the National Threat Assessment Center, up to 76% of school shooters obtain their gun from their home or the home of relatives. In addition to preventing gun violence on school grounds, research shows that secure firearm storage also plays a vital role in reducing unintentional shootings and gun suicide. Every year, hundreds of American children gain access to firearms and unintentionally shoot themselves or someone else. Over the past decade, the firearm suicide rate among young people has increased faster than in any other age group, and today, it’s at a near all-time high. By keeping firearms securely stored, gun owners can help mitigate the risk of gun violence in and out of schools.
Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund’s Be SMART program helps to educate communities across the country about the importance of secure firearm storage. Over the past three years, volunteers with Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, in partnership with Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund, have impacted millions of students by urging school boards across the country to educate parents and caretakers about the critical importance of responsible gun ownership and secure firearm storage. This work is part of Everytown’s comprehensive approach to keeping schools safe from all forms of gun violence.
More information on the role that secure storage can play in helping prevent gun violence is available here.