End Family Fire

What is "Family Fire?"

Family fire refers to a shooting caused by someone having access to a gun from the home when they shouldn’t have it. This includes children as well as those who display behavior that indicates they could harm themselves or others.

Every day, eight children and teens are unintentionally injured or killed due to an unlocked or unsupervised gun in the home. When someone attempts suicide with a gun, they rarely get a second chance to live a full life. Unintentional shootings, suicide, and intentional shootings are all forms of family fire.

Family fire is preventable. Gun owners are an essential part of the solution. We can save lives by practicing safe firearm storage, which means keeping our guns locked, unloaded, separate from ammunition, and inaccessible to children.

We’re calling on gun owners and non-gun owners alike to engage in conversations around safe gun storage and empower others to help keep their communities safe by ending family fire.

“Our End Family Fire program has been seen by millions and is changing not only how we store our weapons, but reaffirming that responsible gun ownership saves lives.”

Kris Brown, President of Brady

You Can End Family Fire — Here’s How

You have the power to end family fire by following our motto: Act, Ask, Talk, and Learn. These four easy steps can prevent avoidable tragedies.

ACT: Safe gun storage must be a top priority for all gun owners, and that means we must ACT responsibly when firearms are in the home by storing guns securely. Although teaching children about gun safety has value, parents should not rely on safety training alone to ensure their kids do not handle guns unsupervised.

ASK: Make sure you ASK the right questions when going to others’ houses or checking in on family and friends. ASK: “Is there an unlocked or loaded gun in the home?”

TALK: Have ongoing conversations with family and friends about safe storage, and TALK about what responsible gun ownership and gun safety looks like.

LEARN: It’s important to LEARN about safe gun storage options in your community from local police departments and firearms retailers and to familiarize yourself with state and local gun laws to ensure you are in compliance.

The Facts That Make Us Act

Family Fire is a major contributor to America’s gun violence epidemic

  • 4.6 million children live in homes with access to an unlocked or unsupervised gun.
  • A 2021 study of child access to firearms found that 33% of gun-owning parents who thought their child could not access a household firearm had a child who reported they could.
  • One study showed that 1 in 5 parents who said their child never handled guns without supervision were contradicted by their child’s reports.
  • Access to guns in the home increases the risk of suicide by 300%.
  • The majority of veteran suicides are gun suicides. Sixty-nine percent of veteran suicides involve a gun, which means an estimated 12 veterans a day die by gun suicide.
  • 51% of all suicide fatalities are by firearm and 60% of all gun deaths are suicides.
  • 76% of school shootings are facilitated by kids having access to unsecured and/or unsupervised guns at home.
  • A relatively modest increase in safe storage — locking all household firearms — could reduce firearm suicide and unintentional firearm fatalities among youth by up to 32%.

    America’s deadliest shootings are the ones we don’t talk about. We lose 65 people to gun suicide every day, and over half of all gun deaths are suicides. When you practice safe storage, you help end family fire.

    The End Family Fire campaign is a part of the Brady Center's C(3) efforts.