Workplace Issues: Help Employees Protect Their Children
Even in these strange times, it is possible to be surprised by less obvious trends.
For example, these two questions have a common answer.
What is the 2nd highest cause of death for children in the US (car crashes are #1)?
What consumer product had a spike in sales during the coronavirus shutdown – and a second spike when the Black Lives Matter protests began?
The answer is guns.
You can read the full top ten causes of child deaths here.
CNN reported the sales growth of guns.
Why are we addressing this issue in a blog devoted to workplace and corporate?
As you begin the return to work, bringing employees back to a new world of the COVID-19 workplace, their children face a long summer at home with a pandemic-induced shortage of child-care.
In addition, parents are distracted by work, health and money worries.
As an employer, now is the ideal time to remind employees to secure guns in their homes so they are not accessible to children and teens.
You could make it a belated acknowledgement of ASK Day, which stands for Asking Saves Lives, and is held on June 21 to encourage a conversation about securing guns.
With the rising uncertainty, anger and anxiety among adults in the US, as we noted in a recent blog, violence in the workplace is also a very real threat. We are planning to take a deeper look at that threat soon.
For now, we will focus on how you can help your employees protect their children at home.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) in a recent press release noted a study which revealed that a significant number of parents incorrectly believe that their children do not know where the gun is stored and think that their children have never handled a gun.
The AAP press release featured safety tips which included:
- Keep a gun unloaded and locked, with the ammunition in a separate place.
- When your child is visiting another home, ask if there are any guns in the home and where they are stored.
- Talk with your children, reminding them if they ever come across a gun to stay away from it and tell a parent immediately.
- Consider storing firearms outside the home.
The AAP has a gun safety toolkit to which you could direct your employees.
Another resource for your employees is the Injury Prevention Center, created by a group of universities and health systems, and hosted by the University of Michigan, all thanks to a grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The Center addresses firearm deaths among young children and one of its publications is the ‘Parents Guide to Home Firearm Safety’.
The Guide lists the locks, boxes and safes that keep guns away from children, including the prices of the equipment and where to buy them.
With the return to school in September still being debated, children could be at home even longer than the usual summer break. Add the distractions of these uncertain times, as a responsible employer, this is the moment to encourage your team members to do more to protect their children from one of the top two highest risks of death.
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