Gun violence is one of the greatest public health threats facing our nation. Each year, 100,000 Americans fall victim to gun violence – with 30,000 deaths and 70,000 wounded. In the last 50 years, we’ve lost approximately 1 million Americans to guns. That’s more than all Americans killed in combat, from the Revolutionary War through today.
In addition to the death and physical injury that guns can cause, research has shown that, in many cities, gun violence-related post-traumatic stress symptoms mirror those seen in veterans of the Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq wars. Gun deaths are wiping out a generation of young people. In fact, 2015 is the first year gun violence is projected to outpace car accidents as the leading cause of death for Americans under the age of 25.
This human cost isn’t the only casualty of gun violence. Each year, gun violence costs families more than $2 billion in hospital charges, saddling victims with a great financial burden and driving up the cost of health care. The CBC Health Braintrust is working to address gun violence as a public health epidemic and promote legislative and community-based solutions to save lives.