Here’s how we’re working to reduce gun violence
Every year, 38,000 people in the United States die as a result of gun violence, and almost 85,000 more suffer non-fatalgun injuries. Locally, violent crime has risen since 2015.
We’re committed to helping reduce these statistics, and we’re hopeful that two new initiatives can make an impact.
To reduce gun violence, we first have to understand its causes, effects and what we’re capable of doing to help. The MetroHealth Advocates for Community and School Safety (MACSS), a new committee of clinical and support staff, will take the lead on those efforts. The group will meet monthly and seeks to increase gun safety by advocating that gun violence be treated as a public health issue. It will also use the latest research to inform and impact public policy.MACSS’ first initiative is to make guns that are already out in our community safer. Starting this week, MetroHealth’s Office of Public Safety is distributing free gun locks to anyone who needs one. This is a simple first step to prevent violence. As MetroHealth Police Chief Frank Bova puts it, “A properly secured weapon is a safe weapon.”
A big part of keeping a weapon secured is properly installing a lock. When people pick up their free locks, MHPD officers will demonstrate proper safety procedures. “Many times, people put the lock behind the trigger,” said Chief Bova, “but that doesn’t stop the gun from being able to discharge.” For an example of safe handling and installing a lock, watch this video.
Locks are now available at the Office of Public Safety at our main campus, and at security offices at most other MetroHealth locations. We’ll also be distributing locks at community events throughout the summer.