|Leave the Area||Involve an Adult||Victim... Don't Be||Educate Your Friends|
L.I.V.E. CINCINNATI is a program that teaches children what to do if they come in contact with an illegal gun. It is important that parents have similar conversations at home. We know it is not always easy to talk with your child about serious subjects like this, but this may be one of the most important conversations you will ever have with your child.
At each L.I.V.E. CINCINNATI presentation, we teach simple action steps to children so they know what to do if they come in contact with an illegal gun. It is important to teach your children how to be safe and choose to L.I.V.E.
1. IF YOU FIND A GUN OR SEE SOMEONE WITH A GUN:
A. Leave the area - an illegal gun may be unstable and go off if touched. A child as young as 3 years old has the finger strength to pull a trigger.
B. Involve an adult who will know how to help. This includes parents, teachers, police officers or other trusted adults.
C. Call 911 or contact Crime Stoppers by texting or calling (513) 352-3040.
2. A GUN IS NOT A TOY.
There is no “take-back” or “my-bad” when dealing with a gun. People are not cartoon characters. When people get shot, they will get hurt and may die.
3. AN ILLEGAL GUN WILL NOT MAKE YOU POWERFUL.
Having an illegal gun will have one of three results:
A. You die or get seriously injured;
B. Someone else will die or get seriously injured; or
C. You go to jail.
4. STAYING SAFE STARTS WITH YOU!
You have the choice -- do not be a victim. Educate your friends about illegal gun violence. Choose to stay away from illegal guns and people who carry them. Make safe choices. If you find a gun or see someone with a gun... LEAVE.
Choose to L.I.V.E.
Did you know it is easy for your child to get an illegal gun?
In the past several years, illegal guns in the hands of juveniles have been on the rise in Hamilton County at an alarming rate. Last year alone in Hamilton County, three children a week were charged with gun-related offenses. A disturbing trend provides easy access to illegal guns through community gun locations. These gun drops are literally guns hidden throughout the community, in locations where a child can borrow an illegal gun for a couple of hours, free of charge, as long as they put it back when they are done using it. Guns used by others in criminal offenses are often for sale on the streets for as little as $20.00. Most of these guns have been used in violent crimes. Some are in such disrepair that they are a hazard to even be around.
Start an honest dialogue with them about guns, just like you do about sex and drugs. Let them know you are there for them and will help them if they need it. Let them know that you are watching and aware of what is going on in our community today. Believe it or not, our children do want us watching. In the recent Hillcrest training school survey, most youth agreed that they would never have picked up an illegal gun if their parents had been more involved, given them stricter punishments, and even searched their rooms. Our children need and want our help and protection, even when they say they don't.
What can I do if I find out my child is involved with an illegal gun? You can call or text Crime Stoppers at (513) 352-3040 or 911 and turn the gun in.
That is what most parents think until they find themselves in court with their child for having an illegal gun. Youth today carry illegal guns for many reasons. One of the most common reasons a child carries a gun is for protection. They may decide they need a gun because of an incident at school or in their neighborhood. They may not be telling you what is going on.
In a recent survey of children at Hillcrest training school, 73 percent of the youth had carried a gun prior to placement, 58 percent of those youth had been threatened with a gun. Take it seriously if you suspect your child is being bullied or threatened.
Not so, there are illegal guns all over the County. We see children in Court from such places as Blue Ash, Western Hills, Springfield Township, Forest Park, Colerain, Wyoming, Mt. Healthy and Oak Hills for being involved with illegal guns.
Sometimes our children don't listen and sometimes it might be your child's friend. Talk to your child about gun safety and remember to always keep your gun in a safe and secure location.