“When they told me what they were doing, I didn’t let them finish, I said, sign me up!” Pastor Ricky Floyd said.
Pastor Floyd, who leads Pursuit of God Transformation Center, jumped at the chance for his church to host what he believes is an important cause.
“If we stop just one child from killing themselves because of this, we’ve succeeded,” Pastor Floyd said.
On October 17th, at Floyd’s Frayser church and five other locations across Memphis, volunteers will hand out free gun safety locks to their neighbors.
“We are a trusted voice in the community and it’s a safe haven,” Pastor Floyd said.
Thanks to a federal grant through the Project ChildSafe initiative, Memphis will receive 10,000 additional free gun safety locks in the next two years.
That includes more than 2,000 locks to be given out in the Bluff City this month.
“We’re not trying to take your weapons away, we’re just trying to age you in being responsible,” Pastor Floyd said.
The timing couldn’t be more critical. Since August 18th, six Mid-South children were accidentally shot, including the deaths of four-year-old Gavin Settles in east Memphis and eight-year-old DeAundre Shannon in southeast Memphis in the same weekend.
“When you link hands and stand together, you always are able to get more done when you are building a coalition,” City of Memphis spokesperson Ursula Madden said.
Project ChildSafe will also provide free gun safety locks in Cleveland and Oklahoma City. Mid-South police precincts also provide free gun locks.