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Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Study Indicates Programs Like NSSF's Project Childsafe Help Prevent Unintended Firearm Deaths

It is said that even a blind squirrel finds an acorn now and then. So it also seems Bloomberg's mouthpiece, The Trace, stumbles across the truth now and then. The gun ban lobby's favorite online news source has this story about a new study indicating programs like NSSF's Project ChildSafe are effective, because, according to the study people were much more likely to comply when provided with a free device to secure their firearms. Project ChildSafe has distributed millions of free firearm locking devices since the early 2000s. The Trace notes:
To conduct the study, Rowhani-Rahbar and his colleagues Joseph Simonetti and Frederick Rivara combed through electronic databases for research on safe gun storage intervention methods. They focused exclusively on studies that used randomized or quasi-experimental trials — two of the most sound methods of conducting research — and ended up with seven studies that met their selection criteria. Six of the studies used safe storage programs that incorporated counseling on the risks of having unsecured guns in the home, and two of those also provided firearms owners with a free gun lock. One program studied provided whole gun cabinets to participants in rural Alaska, but no counseling — only instructions to lock household firearms in the cabinet and keep its key in a secure location.

The intervention programs that gave participants free storage devices were decidedly more effective. When subjects were given counseling and a cable lock, the share practicing safe storage increased by 9.7 percent. In the program where participants received a free gun cabinet, only 35 percent of the intervention group reported having unlocked guns in their homes in a follow-up report, compared to 89 percent of the control group. Among the programs that provided just counseling, only one produced a significant improvement in storage practices.

“If they didn’t actually give the device to participants — even if they provided a coupon or discount to buy a lock — the interventions didn’t work,” Rowhani-Rahbar says.
Of course the article had to go back to that tired talking point that there is a "dearth of firearms research" something that has been debunked but overall the results of this study that the U.S. Department of Justice made a good decision when it awarded a grant to NSSF last year to support Project ChildSafe.

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