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Report: Kids Killed by Guns On Rise Again in CO and Nationwide

June 11, 2008

Denver, CO - Enough children to fill two classrooms were killed by firearms in Colorado in one year. It's part of a nationwide increase in gun deaths among children recorded in 2005, for the first time in more than a decade, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Susan Gates with the Children's Defense Fund analyzed the statistics for a report based on the CDC figures, released today.

"It is absolutely unacceptable that in this country, we lose eight children every day to gun violence."

The CDF recommends stronger gun safety laws, more gun safety education and more focus on helping young people learn to resolve conflicts without violence. Gun rights groups are wary of new gun safety laws, saying they usually conflict with constitutional rights to own weapons.

Pat Kramer is president of the Greater Denver chapter of the Million Mom March. She was particularly disturbed by the fact that the number of children killed by guns nationwide in 2005 could fill more than 100 classrooms.

"I'm a retired schoolteacher, and I've got faces on those kids, you know; I am terrified by that."

The MMM is promoting the "ASK" campaign to prevent gun deaths. She says it's simple: just ask if there will be guns in the places your children visit.

"And if they do say there will, just say, well, 'Can you tell me how you'll keep that gun away from my child?'"

The full CDF report "Protect Children, Not Guns" is online at
www.childrensdefense.org.

Eric Mack/Kevin Clay, Public News Service - CO