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Twenty-two years ago, I survived a shooting at Garfield High School. A student brought his grandfather’s unsecured gun to school, and I was caught in the spray of bullets.

ASK — the Asking Saves Kids campaign — encourages parents to find out if there are unsecured weapons where their children play. We must end the stigma around this topic. Parents already ask about food allergies, swimming pools and dogs when arranging play dates.

Unsecured firearms pose a threat to all kids. As the mom of two young girls, I’m pleading with parents to ASK if there is an unsafe gun where your child spends time.

Firearms are the second leading cause of death for young people, and 1.7 million American children and teens live in homes with unlocked, loaded guns. These deaths are preventable. Firearms must be locked away with ammunition stored separately. Asking can be awkward, but the alternative is much more painful. Ask Day is June 21. Join me in pledging to ASK this summer, to keep all our children safe.

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Rachel Thompson Gruenwald, Shoreline