Wyoming and guns go hand in hand, literally and statistically. Wyoming is second to Montana for gun ownership (by a fraction of a percent: 66.30 percent of Montana households have a gun; 66.20 percent of Wyoming households do).

Wyoming also ranks fourth in the nation for the highest gun death rate.

Firearms were used in 75 percent of Wyoming suicides, according to the Wyoming Department of Health, and in 2021, 155 people died by firearm in Wyoming, a 26 percent death rate, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

The Firearms Research Center (FRC) at the University of Wyoming College of Law is combatting these statistics with its new website dedicated to suicide awareness and prevention. The FRC partnered with the Cheyenne Veterans Health Administration (VHA) and Walk the Talk America to create a page for gun safety information and a mental health directory.

“The suicide crisis is devastating families across the nation, and the Firearms Research Center is committed to doing our part to raise awareness and provide resources to the public,” said FRC Executive Director Ashley Hlebinsky in UW’s news release this week.

“Through this webpage, the FRC hopes to educate those who own, use, sell, and/or rent firearms about safe handling and storage practices, as well as encourage efforts to prevent suicide involving firearms.”

FRC Director George Mocsary said,  “As we recognize September as Suicide Prevention Month, we hope this new online hub will educate, empower, and, ultimately, help save a life.”

Read More: Wyoming Guns and Suicide: An Unfortunate Duo