The Ad Council said today it is taking a new strategic approach to creating gun violence campaigns, utilizing the same coalition-based and multi-audience model it used to address COVID-related issues.
This new approach builds on the organization’s End Family Fire campaign with anti-gun-violence group Brady, which focuses on the dangers of unsecured guns, and will include new communications campaigns including efforts to increase public awareness and education of Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs).
As part of that overall effort The Ad Council and its Research Institute released a new study on ERPOs (sometimes called gun violence restraining orders) which found that most Americans agree that such orders are part of a larger crisis response and see them as efforts to keep communities from mass shootings and individuals safe from suicide.
ERPOs, usually issued at the local government level, are currently used in 19 states and the District of Columbia.
The study also found there is some confusion about the orders and how they’re implemented. 65% of the general population and 78% of law enforcement personnel surveyed agreed that more details on how to start the process of filing an ERPO would be extremely or very helpful.
“There is a huge opportunity to ensure ERPOs are effective and this study proves that communications can make a substantial difference – from what they are called to how those in crisis and the public can play an active role in working with law enforcement to help loved ones who may harm themselves or others,” stated Derrick Feldmann, lead researcher and managing director of Ad Council Research Institute and Ad Council Edge.
“Awareness, along with the right language and framing around a process, implementation, and impact of ERPO laws in a nation where these laws vary from state to state could overcome significant barriers to their implementation and further acceptance,” added Feldman.
Further research around ERPO’s is being conducted for release later in the year.