INDIANAPOLIS — Local organizations are partnering this week to provide Indianapolis residents a free resource to keep our community out of harm’s way.
This comes after last year saw an alarming increase in youth shooting deaths.
The Marion County Commission on Youth (McCoy) is partnering with the Marion County Youth Violence Prevention Coalition to distribute free gun lock boxes to people with firearms this week.
It’s in an effort to curb youth gun violence in our city.
As WRTV previously reported, in 2022, 15 kids were shot and killed. In 2023, that number increased to 21.
The coalition has been providing lock boxes at community events, but has found that those are sporadic and normally in summer months.
Coalition coordinator Rebecca McCracken says the hope is that by securing your firearm, young people and folks experiencing a mental health crisis won’t have easy access.
“If locks are provided and guns are secured and young people don’t have access to them, that unintentional shooting can be prevented," McCracken said. "Young people make impulsive decisions, we’re just really taking about providing a safety, some guardrails so that they don’t get in that situation where they’re just playing with something that can have a deadly consequence.”
There are 200 lock boxes available.
They have plans to do this again if there’s a large turnout.
McCracken says it’s also important to have conversations with your children about guns, whether you own one or not.
If your child is going to another person’s home ask if they have a firearm and if it’s locked up.
All you need to do is walk into the door Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m this week.
You’ll fill out a quick survey and release form.
You'll receive a lock box at no charge.
That address is 1375 W. 16th Street.