"With approximately 30,000 men, women and children dying each year at the barrel of a gun in elementary schools, movie theaters, workplaces, houses of worship and on live television, the U.S. faces a public health crisis of gun violence," AMA President Steven Stack said. "Even as America faces a crisis unrivaled in any other developed country, Congress prohibits the CDC from conducting the very research that would help us understand the problems associated with gun violence and determine how to reduce the high rate of firearm-related deaths and injuries. An epidemiological analysis of gun violence is vital, so physicians and other health providers, law enforcement and society at large may be able to prevent injury, death and other harms to society resulting from firearms."
"We're not debating the constitutionality of firearms - that exists," added Georges Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association. "Firearms exist and people get hurt and die from firearms. There are ways for us in a nonpolitical manner to make people safer with their firearms in a society."
In New York, law enforcement, religious and community leaders are lauding a $1.7 million state grant to combat gun crime. It's part of the Gun-Involved Violence Elimination Initiative through the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, designed to take illegal guns off the streets. The initiative focuses on communities that collectively report 86 percent of the violent crime in the state outside of NYC, including Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo, Hempstead, Jamestown, Kingston, Middletown, Mount Vernon, Newburgh, Niagara Falls, Poughkeepsie, Rochester, Schenectady, Spring Valley, Syracuse, Troy, Utica and Yonkers, as well as Nassau and Suffolk counties. Read more at http://criminaljustice.ny.gov/crimnet/ojsa/impact/index.htm
– Helen Susan Edelman, LiveSmart Project Director, firstname.lastname@example.org; www.facebook.com/crlivesmart
Times Union - Edited and written by Helen Edelman