Northwell Hospital launches national gun violence awareness campaign with support of 1K others

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Friday, September 30, 2022
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Northwell Health launched a national campaign to encourage discussion around gun and gun storage safety. Lauren Glassberg has the story.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Northwell Health launched a national campaign to encourage discussion around gun and gun storage safety.

They say gun violence has been the leading cause of death for children in America for the last two years.

"The second is auto accidents and the third is cancer, but the number one is gun violence and we have an obligation and a responsibility to talk about it," Northwell CEO Michael Dowling said.

Dowling is on a mission to make gun violence a public health issue and he's gaining momentum. More than 1,000 hospitals and medical associations have agreed to support a campaign to prevent accidental gun violence.

The campaign aims to try to end the stigma around talking about unlocked guns in homes. Only 30% of gun owners with children at home store their firearms safely, according to Northwell Health.

The PSA features a roaring tiger and the message is just as you'd ask that a pet tiger be locked up, ask that any guns are locked away too.

Gaelle Clesca said she loves the commercial. She is a pediatric nurse at Northwell Health who has treated kids who have been shot.

She is also a mom.

"As a nurse, as a mom, as a public health servant, I started questioning what can I do to make things better, which is why I'm excited about this opportunity to raise awareness," Clesca said.

"The issue of guns is controversial but the damage to kids and families and doing something to prevent it should never be controversial," Dowling said.

Hospitals from The American Hospital Association, the Children's Hospital Association, and the Catholic Health Association of America joined with Northwell to spread the campaign.

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