GUIDANCE FOR REDUCING ACCESS TO LETHAL MEANS THROUGH VOLUNTARY STORAGE OF PRIVATELY-OWNED FIREARMS:
R 181905Z NOV 14 PSN 018384H24
FM CNO WASHINGTON DC
SUBJ/GUIDANCE FOR REDUCING ACCESS TO LETHAL MEANS THROUGH VOLUNTARY STORAGE
OF PRIVATELY-OWNED FIREARMS//
MSGID/GENADMIN/CNO WASHINGTON DC/N1/NOV//
NARR/REF A IS UNDERSECRETARY OF DEFENSE (PERSONNEL AND READINESS) MEMORANDUM
PROVIDING GUIDANCE FOR COMMANDERS AND HEALTH PROFESSIONALS IN THE DEPARTMENT
OF DEFENSE ON REDUCING ACCESS TO LETHAL MEANS THROUGH THE VOLUNTARY STORAGE
OF PRIVATELY-OWNED FIREARMS. REF B IS DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE INSTRUCTION
6490.04, MENTAL HEALTH EVALUATIONS OF MEMBERS OF THE MILITARY SERVICES.
REF C IS DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE INSTRUCTION 6490.08, COMMAND NOTIFICATION
REQUIREMENTS TO DISPEL STIGMA IN PROVIDING MENTAL HEALTH CARE TO SERVICE
MEMBERS. REF D IS OPNAVINST 5530.14E, NAVY PHYSICAL SECURITY AND LAW
ENFORCEMENT PROGRAM. REF E IS SECNAVINST 5211.5E, DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY
(DON) PRIVACY PROGRAM. REF F IS DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE INSTRUCTION 6025.18-R,
DOD HEALTH INFORMATION PRIVACY REGULATION.//
Rmks/1. Suicide prevention is an all hands effort all the time.
Every life lost to suicide is one too many. More than 50 percent of active-
duty Navy suicides are carried out with privately-owned firearms. Research
clearly indicates that reducing access to lethal means saves lives.
Voluntary measures to reduce access to privately-owned firearms for any
Sailor reasonably believed to be at risk for suicide or causing harm to
others may prevent suicide or other unnecessary deaths in the Navy.
2. As a general rule, the Department of Defense (DoD) does not prohibit the
lawful acquisition, possession, ownership, carrying or other use of
privately-owned firearms, ammunition, or other weapons on property other than
that owned or operated by the DoD. However, as the above law was modified,
commanding officers and health professionals may inquire about, collect and
record information about a service member*s privately-owned firearms,
ammunition or other weapons if the commanding officer or health professional
has reasonable grounds to believe the service member is at risk for suicide
or causing harm to others.
3. In implementing procedures in reference (a), the responsibilities of
commanding officers to assess service member mental health issues and the
responsibilities of health professionals to execute command notification
requirements remain in effect as outlined in references (b) and (c).
4. This policy governs voluntary storage and shall not be executed through
coercion nor the use of incentives/disincentives. Once a Sailor agrees to
voluntarily relinquish a privately-owned firearm, the command shall follow
the procedures outlined in reference (d) for proper safe storage of
privately-owned firearms on an installation. If a command is not located on
an installation, the command should coordinate with local police, sheriff,
National Guard or a Navy Operational Support Command for safekeeping; or the
command shall store the firearm in an approved manner per reference (d). If
a predetermined storage period is not set between the commanding officer and
the Sailor, the firearms shall be returned upon request. The command must
ensure that protected healthcare and personally identifiable information
contained in any documentation is safeguarded per references (e) and (f).
Commanding officers should consult the staff judge advocate or Navy Legal
Service Office for legal advice.
5. In all situations when there is an immediate risk to life, Navy personnel
will take rapid action to ensure a Sailor receives necessary care and
counseling to mitigate the risk of danger to the Sailor or others.
6. Losing one Sailor to suicide is one Sailor too many. This voluntary
measure of reducing lethal means can save a Sailor from an irreversible
decision and thus reduce suicide in our Navy.
Commanding officers and health professionals must be at the forefront of
identifying those Sailors at risk and providing all available assistance.
7. Point of contact for suicide prevention programs is CAPT Mike D.
Smith, OPNAV N171, at (901) 874-6635 or via e-mail at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Point of contact for firearm storage is CDR
Andrea Schreiber, OPNAV N4, at (703) 695-5526 or via e-mail at
8. This NAVADMIN will remain in effect until superseded or canceled,
whichever occurs first.
9. Released by Vice Admiral W. F. Moran, N1.//