HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Houston Police Department Chief Troy Finner and Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis will announce a Gun Buyback event later this month on Monday, July 18.
The event will be for residents who turn in firearms in exchange for gift cards in various amounts, depending on the type of firearm that is turned in, according to a release by HPD.
"We can't solve the gun-violence epidemic overnight, but we can take action right now by removing guns from the streets," Commissioner Ellis said. "Gun buyback programs create an incentive for residents to turn in their firearms. I would argue there are two incentives: one is a gift card, the other is creating a safer community."
The program is part of a broader strategy that was put in place by Harris County to get to the root causes of crime.
Harris County's Violence Interruption Program works with trusted community messengers to de-escalate conflicts, provide a way out of gang activity, and give support resources, according to Commiossioner Ellis.
"The Gun Buyback program is part of my One Safe Houston initiative. Our goal is to get unwanted guns off the streets to prevent their use in a crime or an accidental shooting. I thank Commissioner Ellis, Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, and the Houston Police Department for the partnership. But we cannot have a successful event without the public participating in making our streets safer," Mayor Turner said in a statement.
The gun buyback program will take place on July 30 at Wheeler Avenue from 8 a.m. to noon at Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church.