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LA Department of Public Health to Distribute 60,000 Free Gun Safety Locks in LA County

To address the public health crisis of gun violence, the Los Angeles County Office of Violence Prevention, housed in the Department of Public Health, has made 60,000 gun safety locks available to the public; free, no questions asked.


Free gun safety locks will initially be available at six County medical facilities:


· Harbor-UCLA Medical Center


· High Desert Regional Health Center


· Los Angeles General Medical Center


· Martin Luther King Jr. Outpatient Center


· Olive View-UCLA Medical Center


· Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center


Later this year, gun safety locks will also be made available at Los Angeles County libraries.


In Los Angeles County, a child is killed or injured by gun violence every 30 hours. A number of these incidents involved guns that were left loaded and unlocked. Across the country, an estimated 4.6 million children live in households with loaded and unlocked firearms. Unlocked guns are used to hurt or kill others and also to harm oneself. In 2022, the County experienced more than 300 suicides involving firearms.


“Far too many families have experienced the terrible pain of losing a child or teen-ager to gun violence,” said Dr. Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of Public Health. “In a number of these cases, the simple act of locking and safely storing firearms would have prevented a tragedy. Fostering a culture of safety within the community begins with simple steps like securing firearms and protecting our children.”


“In 1993, at the age of 16, I was shot in the neck, transferred to Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, and diagnosed as a C5-C7 quadriplegic, paralyzed from the chest down,” said Rudy Nuñez, survivor of gun violence. “Throughout my rehab process, I started to see improvement, and was able to move my arms and have since gained sensation and movement throughout my body. Thanks to the wonderful care I received at Rancho, I’m paying it forward as a contracted KnowBarriers Peer Mentor. I’m proud to be joining the Department of Public Health to launch this initiative to provide free gun safety locks to the community. Providing free gun locks and educating the community about gun safety will keep our families safe.”


For more information or to secure a free gun safety lock, visit lockedandunloaded.org.

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