Studies show that individuals are three times more likely to die by suicide when firearms are accessible; and the majority of people who die by suicide use firearms (61%) or poisons (19%). Limiting access to firearms and poisons for a person in crisis is an essential strategy for preventing suicide.
To help families safety proof their homes, our Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board (CSB) is offering free trigger locks and locking medication boxes that fit a wide variety of firearms as part of the new “Lock and Talk Northern Virginia” program.
Lock and Talk, a safe storage program, is part of a comprehensive approach to suicide prevention being implemented by the Wellness, Health Promotion and Prevention program of the CSB. It is intended to:
- Prevent suicides by restricting access to firearms and poisons during a mental health crisis.
- Educate the community about how to recognize and respond to warning signs.
- Encourage others to pass on knowledge.
The CSB prevention team is distributing free cable and trigger locks and locking medication boxes. Gun locks and lockboxes include information on safe handling and messaging, and tips to secure firearms and medications. The best strategy for protecting a person at risk is to remove firearms from the home until a mental health crisis is resolved.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on obtaining free locks.
Talking about suicide can save lives, reduce stigma and encourage help-seeking behaviors. Suicide can be prevented – learn the warning signs.
If you or someone you care about may be at risk of suicide, reach out for help right away. Call PRS CrisisLink 703-527-4077 or 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or text “CONNECT” to 855-11.
If a situation is immediately life-threatening, call 911. Ask for a crisis intervention team officer.