According to the Utah Suicide Prevention Coalition, “A suicidal crisis is often brief, but firearms are quite lethal when used in suicide attempts. In Utah, 86 percent of firearms deaths are suicides. Removing access to guns could delay or prevent a suicide attempt or increase the chances of surviving an attempt.”
When Boncom partnered with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Division of Utah Department of Human Services, the findings revealed that when parents didn’t think their kid is suicidal, they don't feel the need to lock up their guns. However, the leading cause of teen death in Utah is suicide.
Through message testing with parents, Boncom found that focusing this campaign on a more relatable issue – sometimes teens are impulsive – could help raise awareness of this issue, promote the potentially life-saving behavior of locking up guns, and ultimately reduce teen suicide by firearm.
The one-minute spot, which ran on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram, featured several teens telling their parents about the dramatic ups and downs of emotion they experience and the less-than-healthy ways they sometimes cope with life. Although they want to live, there are times when impulsive emotions take over, so locking up guns and ammo is a good idea just in case.