ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) — Gun-related deaths continue to rise in the United States, particularly among younger demographics.

In 2021 the CDC says that firearms, not cars, disease or suffocation were the leading cause of death for children and teenagers aged 1-19.

It’s an issue State Rep. Martin Carbaugh has his eye on.

“Public safety is always a top priority,” Carbaugh said.

And to reduce the 308 violent crimes that involved guns in Allen County in 2021, Carbaugh authored House Enrolled Act 1308.

The bill simply enrolls Allen County in the Indiana Crime Guns Task Force, a partnership between Indiana and federal law enforcement agencies established in 2021 to combat violent crime caused by firearms.

“I believe joining this task force will help local law enforcement better collaborate with federal officials to solve more crimes, which will get more criminals and illegal guns off of our streets,” Carbaugh said. “This effort will increase public safety in our area and beyond.”

According to Carbaugh, the organization seized more than 700 firearms, arrested over 800 suspects and added more than 24,500 entries into the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network to help close unsolved cases since its inception.

The bill awaits the signature of Gov. Eric Holcomb to be signed into law.