Responsible Gun Ownership
What is the problem?
There are an estimated 265 million civilian-owned firearms in the United States. With gun ownership comes responsibility. All gun owners should take certain steps to ensure that their guns are used safely, stored securely, and that they don’t end up in the wrong hands.
All gun owners should be educated on the risks associated with guns and the best practices for storing them securely. Under federal law and the vast majority of state laws, a person is not required to complete firearm safety training before buying a gun. This means a person can purchase a gun without ever having handled one—and in many states, that person would also be allowed to carry it in public without training.
What are the solutions?
Secure Gun Storage
Gun owners can make their homes and communities safer by storing their guns securely. This means storing them locked, unloaded, and separate from ammunition. Securing firearms protects children and adults by preventing unintentional shootings and gun suicides.
Gun Owner Safety Training
States should require a person to complete safety training prior to purchasing a gun or carrying a gun in public. Training ensures that gun owners are educated on the responsible practices for handling and using firearms, storing them securely at home, as well as carrying guns in public.
Report Lost and Stolen Guns
Requiring that lost and stolen guns be reported to law enforcement deters illegal gun trafficking. The reporting of these guns allows the police to respond more quickly to gun thefts and helps them identify tracking patterns.
Smart Guns and Gun Safety Features
A personalized—or “smart”—gun is a firearm that employs authorized-use technology, like the thumb scan or passcode available on many smartphones, to turn stolen guns and guns accessed by children into harmless pieces of steel. If widely implemented, it would be a game-changer for keeping guns out of the hands of children and criminals.
Educate Gun Owners of Risks
It is critical that gun buyers and permit applicants are given safety information. Requiring gun dealers to inform purchasers of the risks associated with firearms allows buyers to make educated decisions about owning and storing guns and is a meaningful step towards preventing gun violence.
What Search Data Shows About Americans and Guns During the COVID-19 Crisis
Search data for guns shows a 40 percent increase amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which is more than the surges after Sandy Hook and Parkland.
Extreme Risk Laws Save Lives
Extreme Risk laws, or “red flag” laws, empower family or police to intervene and temporarily prevent someone in crisis from accessing guns.
Permitless Carry: Carrying a Concealed Gun in Public with No Permit and No Training
Permitless carry legislation is part of the NRA’s broader agenda to weaken and repeal important gun safety measures.
Unload, Lock, and Separate: Secure Gun Storage Practices to Reduce Violence
Secure gun storage practices should include unloading the ammunition, locking the gun, and storing it and ammunition in separate locations.
Responsible Gun Ownership
Not An Accident
Every year, hundreds of children unintentionally shoot themselves or someone else after accessing unsecured guns. This is not an accident.Data Tracker
Those Who Serve: Addressing Firearm Suicide Among Military Veterans
Findings Veteran firearm suicide is a virulent strain of a larger crisis. Firearm suicide is a significant public health crisis in the United States, claiming…Fact Sheet