Guns kill 1300 children and injure almost 5800 each year. These sobering statistics were reported in the June 15 issue of journal Pediatrics and were the topic of Thursday’s Radio Times.
Host Marty Moss-Coane spoke with two local experts about gun violence, Ruth Abaya, an emergency room pediatrician at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and Scott Charles, Temple University Hospital’s trauma outreach coordinator. They told her that they were not surprised by the reports numbers.
“Gun violence has been a persistent epidemic and it’s hasn’t spared the youngest among us for the last several decades.” Abaya told Marty.
Boys and minorities are particularly at risk of being the victims of gun violence. Scott Charles “Cradle to Grave” program at Temple University Hospital works to change the way boys think about guns. He takes teens into the emergency room, not to “scare them straight” but to “help lay bare the medical realities of gun violence,” Charles explained. “Because it’s such a disconnect between what’s depicted for them and the realities…in the emergency room.”
While homicides have declined in recent years among young people, the report found that rates of youth suicides by guns was increasing. Abaya explained that keeping guns away from children is critical to suicide prevention.
The last segment of Radio Times discussed an innovative suicide prevention campaign that enlists gun shop owners called the Gun Shop Project.
To hear more, listen to the full interview on Radio Times.