NSSF Pres/CEO Bartozzi Offers Real Solutions

“These are proven programs that actually save lives and reduce the criminal and accidental misuse of firearms."

NSSF President and CEO Joseph H. Bartozzi
NSSF President and CEO Joseph H. Bartozzi told the audience at the NSSF State of the Industry presentation that the NSSF is working hard to provide real solutions for safer communities.Staff Photo

At the State of the Industry presentation on Tuesday evening, NSSF President and CEO Joseph H. Bartozzi told attendees, “Your attendance and participation at the SHOT Show helps to support not only the lawful commerce in firearms, ammunition, and accessories, but also the many great safety and education programs that the industry, through the NSSF, supports. For example, our safety messaging campaign, Real Solutions for Safer Communities, highlights real firearms safety programs, designed to make our communities safer by keeping firearms out of the wrong hands. These are proven programs that actually save lives and reduce the criminal and accidental misuse of firearms.

“Despite the disgraceful slander from certain politicians and some in the media, our industry is deeply and personally affected by the misuse of firearms. The difference between us and some politicians is that we are actually doing something about it.

“We may never know which child was not injured or killed because her parents locked their handgun with a Project ChildSafe lock. We may never know about a convicted felon or a prohibited person who tried to buy a gun at retail but was stopped because of our Don’t Lie for the Other Guy program or because his records were actually in the National Instant Criminal Check System, thanks to our FixNICS initiative. We may never know about a suicidal person who didn’t take his or her own life because one of our members was able to employ our suicide prevention materials.

“But we do have evidence that our efforts are making a difference. Take, for example, the pastor of the Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church in Memphis, who has used Project ChildSafe to encourage safe storage of firearms among his parishioners and community. In the words of Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland, ‘Thousands of locks have been given away. Families are talking, and the program is definitely helping make gun safety in the home a priority throughout Memphis.’

“And the same goes for our suicide prevention efforts. With nearly two-thirds of all firearms-related deaths being suicides, NSSF is playing an important role in helping to reduce the rate of suicide by firearm. We’re providing education to members of our industry and our customers through groundbreaking programs. We’ve partnered with the nation’s largest suicide prevention group, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, as well as the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Department of Defense. These are just a few examples of the things that our industry stands for, what we support, and, just as important, what we fund. These are real solutions for safer communities, and they are making a difference. Be proud of this fact.”