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April 3, 2019

Canada’s nurses join day of action for gun control

Today, Canada’s nurses are united with health care workers across the country as we recognize a national day of action for stronger gun laws in Canada. We are proud to announce our endorsement of the Canadian Doctors for Protection from Guns position statement. We add our voices to their call for the federal government to address this public health crisis by way of two specific actions:

  1. The introduction of legislation and other tools to reduce the prevalence of firearms, such as restrictions on gun ownership, an amnesty program to recover firearms currently in circulation, and a strategic approach to reduce the illegal sale of guns and the importation of firearms from other jurisdictions;
  2. Funding and infrastructure for research on the epidemiology of firearm injury and death including the role of societal determinants such as poverty, mental illness, racial discrimination, and social isolation; as well as the effectiveness of strategies to reduce firearm related injuries and deaths.

Since 1991, the CFNU has been advocating for a public health approach to gun control, because ensuring public safety by reducing the risk of injury or death by firearms is an intervention measure aimed at protecting public health. Nurses are firsthand witnesses to the emotional and physical trauma that results from gun violence. Whether it is someone suffering after a suicide attempt, intimate partner violence, a child wounded accidentally, or a gang-related shooting, a nurse will be waiting in the emergency room to witness the outcome.

Over the last year, nurses have joined many in urging the federal government to pass Bill C-71, An Act to amend certain Acts and Regulations in relation to firearms. Click here to read our submission on Bill C-71 to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security.