A Call to Action from the Nation's Nurses in the Wake of Newtown

  1. 10 Reposting from PSNA Communications email. Karen

    A Call to Action from the Nation's Nurses in the Wake of Newtown

    More Than 30 Nursing Organizations Call for Action in Wake of Newtown Tragedy
    (12/20/12)

    Like the rest of the nation, America's nurses are heartbroken as we grieve the unthinkable loss and profound tragedy that unfolded last week in Newtown, Connecticut. This horrific event is a tipping point and serves as a call to action. The nation's nurses demand that political and community leaders across this country address longstanding societal needs to help curb this endless cycle of senseless violence.

    Our country has witnessed unspeakable acts of mass shootings. The common thread in each of these tragedies has been the lethal combination of easy access to guns and inadequate access to mental health services.
    As the largest single group of clinical health care professionals, registered nurses witness firsthand the devastation from the injuries sustained from gun violence. We also witness the trauma of individuals, families, and communities impacted by violence.

    The care and nurturing of children in their earliest years provides a strong foundation for healthy growth and development as they mature into adulthood. Children, parents, and society face growing challenges with respect to widespread bullying and mental illness, and nurses understand the value of early intervention. Over the past decade, ill-advised and shortsighted cutbacks within schools and community health care systems have seriously impeded critical and needed access to school nurses and mental health professionals trained to recognize and intervene early with those who are at risk for violent behavior.

    The public mental health system has sustained a period of devastating cuts over time. These cuts have been exacerbated during the Great Recession despite an increase in the demand for services for all populations, including our nation's veterans. States have cut vital services, such as community and hospital-based psychiatric care, housing, and access to medications. Looming budget cuts could lead to further cuts in services.

    It is time to take action. The nation's nurses call on President Obama, Congress, and policymakers at the state and local level to take swift action to address factors that together will help prevent more senseless acts of violence. We call on policymakers to:

    • Restore access to mental health services for individuals and families
    • Increase students' access to nurses and mental health professionals from the elementary school level through college
    • Ban assault weapons and enact other meaningful gun control reforms to protect society

    The nation's nurses raise our collective voice to advocate on behalf of all of those who need our care. As a nation, we must commit to ending this cycle of preventable violence, death, and trauma. We must turn our grief into action.

    Alabama State Nurses Association
    American Academy of Nursing
    American Nurses Association
    American Psychiatric Nurses Association
    ANA-Illinois
    ANA-New York
    ANA-Michigan/RN-AIM
    Arizona Nurses Association
    Arkansas Nurses Association
    Association of Nurses in AIDS Care
    Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses
    Colorado Nurses Association
    Connecticut Nurses' Association
    Delaware Nurses Association
    Infusion Nurses Society
    Louisiana State Nurses Association
    Massachusetts Association of Registered Nurses
    Minnesota Organization of Registered Nurses
    Missouri Nurses Association
    Montana Nurses Association
    National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists
    National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses
    National Association of School Nurses
    National League for Nursing
    New Hampshire Nurses' Association
    New Jersey State Nurses Association
    New Mexico Nurses Association
    Nurses Organization of Veterans Affairs
    Ohio Nurses Association
    Oklahoma Nurses Association
    Pennsylvania State Nurses Association
    Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association
    Rhode Island State Nurses Association
    Virginia Nurses Association
    Washington State Nurses Association
    Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Dec 26, '12
  2. Poll: Nurses: Do You Support a Call to Action in the Wake of Newtown + other shootings

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  3. Visit  NRSKarenRN profile page

    About NRSKarenRN, BSN, RN

    NRSKarenRN has '35+' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Home Care, VentsTelemetry, Home infusion'. From 'RN Spirit from Philly Burb'; Joined Oct '00; Posts: 26,691; Likes: 12,637.

    219 Comments so far...

  4. Visit  VICEDRN profile page
    2
    HEAR HEAR! Georgia get on board!
    RNnbakes and herring_RN like this.
  5. Visit  Esme12 profile page
    1
    Together.....we can be a powerful force.
    herring_RN likes this.
  6. Visit  22gawhitacre profile page
    11
    How could there have been a shooting in a place clealy labeled a gun free zone? More knee jerk liberal reactions that won't solve anything.
    mcknis, tewdles, kabfighter, and 8 others like this.
  7. Visit  VivaLasViejas profile page
    26
    May I gently remind everyone that nurses are not a monolith, and that these professional organizations do not speak for all of us.

    IMHO, if mental health services were available to every person who needs or wants help, regardless of income or social status, there'd be no need for so-called "gun control" (which is really law-abiding citizen control). Just saying.
    Sterling-RN, mcknis, tewdles, and 23 others like this.
  8. Visit  sapphire18 profile page
    2
    Love this. Think of the Albert Einstein quote- the common thread is limited mental health care, and availability of assault weapons to the general public. Doesn't take a genius to figure this one out. Thanks for sharing this, Karen.
    tewdles and lindarn like this.
  9. Visit  MBARNBSN profile page
    6
    Quote from VivaLasViejas
    IMHO, if mental health services were available to every person who needs or wants help, regardless of income or social status, there'd be no need for so-called "gun control" (which is really law-abiding citizen control). Just saying.
    This is the basis of the it’s-a-slippery-slope argument, where Fear-Mongers afraid of the government taking all of your weapons away justifies ANY and all weapons being available to normal average citizens no matter how dangerous or how ridiculous!!! Fortunately, you guys (to include the NRA that is only in business to support the GUN MANUFACTURERS and not the Second Amendment, which does not protect the need for assault weapons in the hands of civilians) are not going to get away with pushing this garbage argument this time. Especially not after 20 babies were killed and everyone in this country and around the world was paying attention.

    Assault weapons and high capacity clips are not necessary for CIVILIANS of any kind to own. There is not a single civilian that needs access to these things to hunt for sport because they are mass people killers and have no other use!

    By the way, not everyone who kills people is mentally ill! So, keeping these weapons out of the hands of mentally ill will not solve the problem of preventing the next mass shooting... This argument just kicks-the-can-down-the-road and distracts from the need to remove access of high capacity clips and assault weapons out of the hands of ALL civilians, just like the NRA and Gun Manufacturers wants.
    Last edit by MBARNBSN on Dec 21, '12
  10. Visit  sapphire18 profile page
    10
    Quote from MBARNBSN

    Assault weapons and high capacity clips are not necessary for CIVILIANS of any kind to own. There is not a single civilian that needs access to these things to hunt for sport because they are mass people killers and have no other use!
    This.^^
    USNurse1, jadelpn, Mollypita, and 7 others like this.
  11. Visit  amoLucia profile page
    10
    You can make all the new laws you want, but the same problem will still exist ---- how will you enforce them???

    All kinds of laws on the books NOW to prohibit cell phone use and texting while driving, but has it stopped?

    Same thing about driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs. ETC, etc, etc.

    Good intentions, but difficult to realistically enforce to have a real impact.

    Criminals are criminals - just when you think you build a better mousetrap (to catch them), along come smarter rats.

    I agree though, we do need something!
    workingharder, oye757928, HM-8404, and 7 others like this.
  12. Visit  RNpearls1908 profile page
    2
    Quote from amoLucia
    You can make all the new laws you want, but the same problem will still exist ---- how will you enforce them???

    All kinds of laws on the books NOW to prohibit cell phone use and texting while driving, but has it stopped?

    Same thing about driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs. ETC, etc, etc.

    Good intentions, but difficult to realistically enforce to have a real impact.

    Criminals are criminals - just when you think you build a better mousetrap (to catch them), along come smarter rats.

    I agree though, we do need something!
    This!!!
    lindarn and Mike A. Fungin RN like this.
  13. Visit  kcmylorn profile page
    4
    My thought is- even if we had laws to ban all guns, there would still be smuggling and those that want, will get them. Just like illegal drugs. There still remains the core issue of mental health and how poor our mental health system is- lack of access, not enough mental health professionals, and beyond poor pay for those few mental health health professionals we do have.
    It's amazing- this country always has all this money to pay nonessential space taker upers, people who sit in top offices all day growing fat behinds and making bad decisions, airheads and bimbettes, but no money to pay professionals who actually work in a worthwhile profession.
    Sadala, KeyMaster, herring_RN, and 1 other like this.
  14. Visit  janhetherington profile page
    4
    I really don't like it when organizations I belong to take detailed stands without consulting their members. The fact is, it's not just access to mental health services that needs improving, it's the commitment of society to protect itself from the mentally ill. Now before you jump all over me:
    Two years ago the man down the street from us was repairing his roof. When it got dark he quit and went inside to spend the evening with his wife and son. My own son was friends with the older brother, who had moved into his own place as he and my son were both in their late 20s. The younger son, who I will call Cameron, had a history of mental health problems. He got plenty of care and attention from the mental health professionals and his parents, who were educated and caring people. About 1 a.m. Cameron, who had just quit taking his antipsychotic medicine, realized his parents were actually demons. He picked up his father's hammer and killed him. His mother escaped by hiding behind cars parked in our street. It was Cameron's choice whether to take his medicine and everyone had to live with it. Where is Cameron now? Living in a halfway house in town free to meet and greet you and me. Another case in point: A good friend of my son's was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and received plenty of care and attention from his own educated and caring family as well as many mental health professionals. As long as he took his medicine he realized government agents really weren't after him and led his life. He too decided to quit taking the pills and was arrested after flooding a commercial building which housed some government offices, among other tenants. Caused hundreds of thousands dollars worth of damages. Luckily nobody was hurt. My family and I are average ordinary people and other people could tell similar stories. Neither of these cases involved guns. But we just let the (literal) madness go on and on, pretending that people should be able to choose whether to be psychotic and run riot or not. The violence will not stop until we get serious about what free choice really is.
    mcknis, KeyMaster, Altra, and 1 other like this.
  15. Visit  VivaLasViejas profile page
    12
    Quote from MBARNBSN
    This is the basis of the it's-a-slippery-slope argument, where Fear-Mongers afraid of the government taking all of your weapons away justifies ANY and all weapons being available to normal average citizens no matter how dangerous or how ridiculous!!! Fortunately, you guys (to include the NRA that is only in business to support the GUN MANUFACTURERS and not the Second Amendment, which does not protect the need for assault weapons in the hands of civilians) are not going to get away with pushing this garbage argument this time. Especially not after 20 babies were killed and everyone in this country and around the world was paying attention.

    Assault weapons and high capacity clips are not necessary for CIVILIANS of any kind to own. There is not a single civilian that needs access to these things to hunt for sport because they are mass people killers and have no other use!

    By the way, not everyone who kills people is mentally ill! So, keeping these weapons out of the hands of mentally ill will not solve the problem of preventing the next mass shooting... This argument just kicks-the-can-down-the-road and distracts from the need to remove access of high capacity clips and assault weapons out of the hands of ALL civilians, just like the NRA and Gun Manufacturers wants.
    With all due respect---which is more than what my comments received---I'm still not getting how taking ANY sort of weapons away from law-abiding citizens will keep them out of the hands of murderous criminals, who care nothing about gun laws or anything else. It simply does not add up, and until the anti-gun activists can come up with facts, many Americans will continue to object to the systematic dismantling of our rights by government fiat.

    For what it's worth, I'm an NRA member myself and I have no idea why a civilian would want or need an assault weapon. For most of us, owning guns is about personal protection, hunting, or collecting. And no one but the families and friends of those killed in Newtown could be more upset and saddened about this colossal waste of young lives than I am. But I also remember the 168 lives, including those of babies and children, that came to a sudden and violent end in Oklahoma City without a single shot being fired. And I remember the nearly 3,000 souls who were lost on a beautiful September morning by mass murderers who used airplanes and box cutters as weapons.

    'Nuff said..... by me, anyway.
    mcknis, tewdles, Wile E Coyote, and 9 others like this.

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