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WIAAP Supports National Asking Saves Kids (“ASK”) Day Campaign Promotes Gun Safety to Physicians, Parents

June 21, 2009 (Father's Day) is national ASK Day -- Asking Saves Kids. This initiative educates physicians and families about the importance of determining whether there are guns in the homes where their children play.

Thiensville, WI, June 18, 2009 --( The Wisconsin Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (WIAAP) endorsed National ASK Day, celebrated this year on Father’s Day, June 21, 2009. Held annually on the first day of summer, a time of year when children play more often in other homes, ASK (Asking Saves Kids) reminds parents about the importance of asking if there are guns in the homes where children play.

In America, nearly 1.7 million children live in a home with a loaded, unlocked gun, and a staggering 40 percent of homes with children have a gun. More than 41,000 children and teens in Wisconsin live in homes with loaded guns, and nearly 15,000 children live in homes with guns that are loaded and unlocked.

The Wisconsin Chapter of the Academy of Pediatrics (WIAAP) suggests that pediatricians participate in ASK Day this year by incorporating the ASK concept into their injury prevention discussions during complete, well-child exams.

Parents ask all sorts of questions to protect their children when they go play at the home of a friend, neighbor or caregiver. However, there is one important question that more than half of parents say it never even occurred to them to ask: “Is there a gun in your home?” If the answer is no, that is one less thing to worry about. If the answer is yes, parents are urged to ensure that the guns are stored locked and separate from ammunition, preferably in a gun safe.

Jeffrey Britton, MD, FAAP, chair of the chapter’s Injury, Violence and Poison Prevention Committee, said, “Hiding guns is not enough. There are countless tragic stories of kids finding guns that parents thought were well hidden or safely stored.” If there are any doubts about the safety of someone else's home, the parent should politely insist the children play at their own house instead.

More information is available at

Comprised of nearly 1,000 members and a part of the American Academy of Pediatrics (“AAP”), WIAAP works to assure optimal health and safety for Wisconsin’s children and their families through advocacy and collaboration with child interest groups. WIAAP supports Wisconsin pediatricians, enabling them to continue to be the most effective providers of health care to children.

The American Academy of Pediatrics is committed to the attainment of optimal physical, mental and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents and young adults.

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Wisconsin Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics
Kia LaBracke

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