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Free gun locks to be offered at the Strawberry Festival in Billings | News | #childsafety | #kids | #chldern | #parents | #schoolsafey

BILLINGS, Mont. – Community members can pick up a free gun lock at the Strawberry Festival in Billings on July 8.

Locks are being offered by the Billings Police Department and RiverStone Health at the festival for child safety.

RiverStone Health says gun locks promote firearm safety in the home, and that they delay access to firearms when a person has a suicidal impulse and protect curious children from accidentally firing a weapon.

Of county residents who were surveyed, 30% reported having loaded, unlocked firearms in their home or vehicle, the 2023 Yellowstone County Community Health Needs Assessment found.

“BPD is partnering with RiverStone Health to give some education on gun safety, while at the same time giving people the tools to practice good gun safety,” said Sgt. Nate West, public relations sergeant.

The Billings Police Department will have a booth in the 300 block of North Broadway during the Strawberry Festival. You can also get a free gun lock from RiverStone Health by calling 406-24703338 weekdays.

This gun lock safety project is funded through a suicide prevention grant from the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services. Nationwide, 50% of suicides involve guns. In Montana, which has one of the highest suicide rates among the 50 states, firearms are involved in 60% of deaths by suicide


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