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Why Wisconsin doctors wanted you to talk about guns today

MILWAUKEE — As death by firearm is now the leading cause of death for kids and teens across the United States, doctors are imploring adults to have some potentially tough conversations to find out whom among family and friends has guns and how they’re stored, especially if their kids ever spend any time there.

“It’s essential that parents have these conversations,” said Dr. Adam Brinkman, the pediatric trauma medical director for UW Health Kids. “Kids are curious in general and we want kids to have that curiousity and explore their environments, but it’s unsafe to have firearms that are loaded and unlocked in the environment that children are playing in.”

To that end, Wednesday was National Asking Saves Kids Day, or ASK Day, a day set aside to encourage parents, grandparents and other caregivers to ask others whether guns might be accessible to their kids inside their homes.

“Follow that up with, “Where are they kept? Are they loaded, unloaded or kept in a locked cabinet?,” Dr. Brinkman said. “Our message and the message from the American Academy of Pediatrics is that the best place for a gun in a home is in a locked cabinet with the bullets and gun kept separate.”

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