Mike agreed to let his father change the combination on his gun safe for now.
What is the Veteran willing to do?
Aim for what’s acceptable to the Veteran and what makes things safest.
Away From Home
Store Guns Away from Home Until Things Improve
Pawn shops (outside NYC only)
Preventing Access at Home
Store Guns at Home, But Add Barriers to Access
Can someone else hold onto the keys or re-set the combination for now? If no, how about if the Veteran stores the keys away from home (e.g., bank deposit box) to reduce quick access in a suicidal crisis.
Consider keeping ammunition out of the home for now or locked separately.
Another option: disassemble the guns and store a vital part like the slide or firing pin away from home until the veteran is feeling better.
WHAT ABOUT THE SELF-DEFENSE FIREARM?
- That can be the toughest gun to agree on.
- But what’s the biggest threat to the family right now? Attack from a stranger or suicide death of the Veteran?
- Let the Veteran know their family needs them.
A tactical firearm instructor talks about safe storage for your self-defense firearm.
Kevin, a Veteran, father, and counselor, discusses safe storage options.
Is neither relocating nor locking the guns an option?
- Try other ways to “cause the pause“
- Whatever puts some time and distance between the person and the gun may save a life.
- Ask the Veteran if there are images, sayings, phone numbers, anything that could help them reconsider their suicidal urge.
- Would a reminder of a reason to live on the gun safe or ammo box help? Like a picture of their kids or pet? Remember to revisit this as the situation changes (like changes in custody).
Things to Remember and Next Steps
- State and local laws may limit who can hold a weapon on someone’s behalf and provides rules on how that transfer should happen. Learn what legally works in your state.
- Remember that these ideas and suggestions are a starting point. What options are best is the firearm owners right and decision. Here are some tips on how to share your ideas while letting them know they are still in control.
- Considering these options can be stressful. View more resources to get help for you or your loved one.
- Firearms do not have to be your only focus. Learn about making the home safer in other ways.
- The option that works best now does not have to be the one you use forever. Start thinking about long-term solutions.