|Texas A&M University-Com|
With so much attention on firearms and firearm safety in the news, the epidemiologic data on the prevalence of weapons involved in youth victimization seems to have been lacking—until now!
Mitchell et al. (doi: 10.1542/peds.2014-3966) have shared data on a national survey of children exposed to violence and report an astounding finding—more than 17.5 million children and teens are exposed to violence in which a weapon is involved—meaning they have served as witnesses or victims. More than 2 million children and teens report they have been directly assaulted in incidents where guns or knives were used.
Perhaps those on the fence regarding strengthening our gun-safety practices will jump off that fence and recognize the need to do all we can to restrict youth access as well as exposure to firearms so that the mental health repercussions of being victimized by these weapons and the people using them can be reduced as much as possible.
There is a lot of important information in this study worth sharing with those who are making decisions regarding gun control in your state or region—so do not hesitate to share this important study wherever it can make a difference.