It’s common sense that guns should be locked up when not in use, especially where children are present.
But there is good reason for introducing children to firearms, says Firearm Safety Group co-owner Julie Peters.
“Children need education, not a fear of firearms,” Peters said. “If parents hide a firearm, it’s a mystery.” And that mystery is something that, if a child somehow gains access to, will likely be pulled out at some point and examined, possibly shown to friends, and could lead to tragedy.
“We have three girls, and any gun they ever wanted to see they were allowed to look, hold, and taught to shoot,” Peters said. “That takes the mystery out of it.”
Firearm Safety Group conducts youth programs that introduce guns to children ages 8 to 15. The Parent/Youth Intro to Pistol class is a four-hour session where parents and their children together learn the knowledge, skills, and attitude for owning and operating a pistol safely. The course includes classroom and range time learning to shoot revolvers and/or semi-automatic pistols. Students learn rules for safe gun handling, pistol parts and operation; ammunition, shooting fundamentals, range rules and two-handed standing positions.
“We get a lot of families do this together so everybody’s on the same page,” Peters said. “We want the parents to be knowledgeable, too.”
Youth Shoot Camp introduces kids 8-14 to firearm safety, home safety, shooting fundamentals and live fire. The 3-day camp is 4 hours each day.
FSG also offers an informational free Safety Awareness seminar for parents and children, discussing how to approach children of the potential hazards of improperly stored firearms, whether in the home or a friend’s. Education and basic safety rules are introduced.
This summer will also mark the first year the Girl Scouts will participate in a gun safety program at FSG.
Firearm Safety Group
3029 Eldamain Road
Plano, IL 60545