From Washington Ceasefire:
Asking Saves Kids (ASK) - Washington is a public safety education campaign aimed at encouraging inquiry by parents and neighbors about guns in homes where their children play. Our goal is to persuade parents that this conversation—to ensure that their kids play in a gun safe environment—is an essential parental responsibility.
Despite the very real dangers of guns in proximity to children, pro-active dialogue is necessary due to the often delicate nature of any conversation in this country involving guns. Thus, this effort does not interfere with nor infringe upon anyone’s right to legally possess a gun, but normalizes parent responsibility to ask and make an informed decision that where their children play is safe.
The conversation is worth the effort given that ten children a day in this country under the age of 18 are killed or injured in the home with a gun. An estimated 40% of homes in the US (and in Washington State) have guns. A recent study by King County Public Health found there are at least 5,000 homes in the county with children and unlocked guns.
Our strategy in changing parental behavior is: 1) to highlight those instances where a gun in the home resulted in a tragedy involving a child, and 2) to impress upon parents that ensuring their child’s safety trumps any inconvenience or discomfort in neighbor to neighbor conversation. Central to the ASK program is educating and supporting parents in making the most tactful outreach possible to minimize awkwardness and maintain neighborly relationships.
I did this since the time my children were small. It's not the easiest
of conversations but I would just ask parents is they had guns in their
I only got one yes and I said I had no judgments about gun ownership
(these people had antique guns but they did fire them) but could we have
the kids play at my house or at a playground. They were fine with it. (If they said they had secured guns, I would probably have asked more questions.)
The point is I have now raised two sons. I know how curious kids are at ALL ages.
did not want the phone call that said my child had killed another child
or that my son was dead because of another child with a gun (which
would be worse, I don't know).