Post and Courier | Skylar Laird
27 June 2022
COLUMBIA — The City of Columbia will hand out free gun safe locks in the latest of a series of efforts to promote gun safety.
Council member Aditi Bussells announced the “Lock It Up” campaign at the June 21 City Council meeting. In addition to gun locks, the city will give people “gun cheat sheets” to track the make and model of their firearms, making it easier for authorities to retrieve a gun if it’s stolen.
The locks will be available at Columbia Police Department events, weekly Parks and Recreation Prime Time in the Parks nights, and nonprofit Serve & Connect’s upcoming Be Safe block parties.
By teaming up with Serve & Connect, “Lock It Up” goes beyond just handing out gun locks and works to engage the community, Bussells said. It follows several other gun safety campaigns in conjunction with local groups and county law enforcement.
Gun safety is at the forefront now with the idea for the “Lock It Up” campaign coming after the recent shooting in Uvalde, Texas, in which a gunman killed 19 students and two teachers and wounded 17 others, Bussells said.
“Really, for me (the question) was, ‘What are some of the root causes of gun violence, and then what can we do immediately in the short-term to address it as a city?’” Bussells said. “And continue to then, of course, work with our community partners and law enforcement partners to think about and implement some of those longer-term solutions.”