SILVER SPRING, MD – The American Nurses Association (ANA) endorses the American Academy of Nursing’s (AAN) Statement “Firearm Safety and Violence Prevention.” Since 1994, ANA has considered gun violence a public health issue and has made calls for policy actions on the need to limit the availability of handguns, ban assault weapons, and require a waiting period and background check for gun purchasers. AAN’s statement overlaps considerably with ANA’s historic position and calls to action.
“Time and again, we denounce senseless gun violence. We apologize to parents who will never hug their child again. We mourn alongside the health care professionals who couldn’t save the victims of mass shootings. We call out the madness that is valuing a gun over a human life. Yet the devastating theme of mass shootings continues. Inaction on gun violence is directly related to the value we place on the lives of those around us, and the conscience of our nation relies on breaking this cycle so future generations can attend school, go grocery shopping, or go bowling without being in fear that that may be their last time ever doing so” President Jennifer Mensik Kennedy, PhD, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN.
Nurses witness the immediate devastation from mass shootings and gun violence. Whether it occurs in their community or anywhere in the nation, the physical and mental health consequences of gun violence take a toll on nurses and all frontline providers. Nurses must be prepared for conversations with patients, community leaders, and policymakers on the issue of gun violence and firearm safety and the long-term social and health impacts it brings.
ANA stands on a decades-long positions and call-to-actions to address firearm safety, prevent gun violence, and study the impacts of gun violence on that of nurses, health care professionals and the public. As such, ANA will continue collaborating with public health professionals, policymakers, and community leaders, funding initiatives to help address the upstream causes of violence, and denouncing instances of gun violence. On behalf of the nation’s more than 5 million registered nurses, ANA stands in solidarity with the individuals, families, communities and health care professionals impacted and will work to mitigate all forms of gun violence.
About the American Nurses Association
The American Nurses Association (ANA) is the premier organization representing the interests of the nation's more than 5 million registered nurses. ANA advances the profession by fostering high standards of nursing practice, promoting a safe and ethical work environment, bolstering the health and wellness of nurses, and advocating on health care issues that affect nurses and the public. ANA is at the forefront of improving the quality of health care for all. For more information, visit www.nursingworld.org