Jackson County residents can get free gun locks for guns they keep in their home.
Since the fall of 2015, the Jackson County Sheriff's Office and Children's Mercy Hospital have partnered to distribute more than 1,100 cable-style gun locks. The locks are provided at no cost and with no questions asked.
Gun locks come with instructions in either English or Spanish. They can be picked up at security offices at the Children’s Mercy Adele Hall Campus, 2401 Gillham Road, Kansas City; the hospital’s College Boulevard location, 5520 College Boulevard, Overland Park, Kansas; the hospital’s Broadway location, 3101 Broadway Blvd., Kansas City; or the Jackson County Sheriff's Office at 4001 NE Lakewood Way, Lee's Summit.
The free distribution is made possible by Project ChildSafe, a non-profit charitable organization developed by the National Shooting Sports Foundation. According to the project's website, more than 15,000 law enforcement agencies have partnered with the project to distribute more than 36 million firearms safety kits to gun owners in all 50 states and five United State territories.
Supporters include dozens of outdoors and shooting organizations and outdoors retailers.
The Sheriff's Office says protecting firearms in the home is part of practicing responsible gun ownership.
“We want to continue to encourage anyone with a firearm at home to be accountable to the obligation of safety they have to their families and their communities,” Capt. David Epperson said in a release.
The American Academy of Pediatrics says while the absence of guns in children's homes is the most reliable and effective prevention of firearm-related injuries in children and adolescents, safe gun storage – including loaded and unloaded guns and ammunition locked separately – can reduce unintentional injury and suicide risk.
“Anything we can do to boost gun safety, awareness and protecting our citizens – especially our most valuable assets, our children – we are going to be an active leader in that effort,” Jackson County Sheriff Mike Sharp said in a release. “I would ask anyone in Jackson County with a firearm at home to take advantage of this opportunity.”
For more information, visit www.projectchildsafe.org.