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From Kate Gold on the science of violence at IOM meeting

November 11th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

While we are still tuning up our blog (I feel President Obama’s pain with the healthcare roll out) this came from Dr. Kate Gold. We always love good news in the gun violence struggle.                -Jerry

She wrote:

The Institute of Medicine held their annual meeting in Washington DC on October 21, 2013.  Each year, the meeting is convened around a certain theme: in 2011 the focus was on vaccines and in 2012 on health professions education. This year, the meeting was entitled: “The Science of Violence: Causation, Mitigation, and Prevention.”  We heard from more than a dozen researchers who talked about the history of lobbyist opposition to public health research (going so far as to shut down our early sections of the CDC focused on gun violence), mental health and violence, violence prevention programs that work, the impact of recurrent exposure to violence, and different types of violence including a large focus on gun violence.  There was also some interesting discussion about the “contagious” nature of violence and how in some ways it should be viewed more like an infectious disease.  During the Q/A period, one IOM member reported she mentored a young physician-research who had been told that focusing a career on gun violence would be career-suicide, and another member countered that when he found himself on the NRA target list of violence researchers, he immediately put that honor on his CV! All in all, it was a fascinating day and encouraging to see so many diverse members of the IOM being exposed to the issues of violence research and see so much energy around such a critical public health issue.

A link to the day’s agenda is below and the site also has videos of all the talks:

Katherine Gold  MD MSW MS
Department of Family Medicine
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology
University of Michigan

From Jerry Walden, African-American woman shot in MI, but Election win in VA.

November 9th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

The last few days have been important ones for the public health approach
to gun violence.

We lost a young African-American woman to a Stand Your Ground type response
in Michigan. Yet another loss that was based on what Bill Alt of Interfaith
Council for Peace and others are calling the “culture of fear”. We have
to explore this fear and lable the need for guns as a co-morbidity – that of
*cowardice*. It is cowardly to use extreme force- that of a weapon of
destruction to an unarmed woman in search of help on your porch.
We have to become more hospitable and more open as a society. As physician
leaders our work is cut out for us. Together we can! We can start by the
“diagnosis of the problems as fear and cowardice.

On another front Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly see a victory for our
interest in big Virginia victories vs. the gun lobby. See below.

Jerry –

From Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly
Nov 6 (2 days ago)
Last night, Virginians elected a pair of statewide candidates at the top of
the ticket who campaigned on common sense solutions to reduce gun violence,
and the results sent a powerful message to the rest of the country:

*Candidates who campaign on reducing gun violence — even in purple states
— win elections.*

Governor-Elect Terry McAuliffe: “I’m a gun owner and I’m a hunter. But I
support universal background checks. My opponent and I differ on that.”

Lt. Governor-Elect Ralph Northam partnered with Virginia Tech families to
support universal background checks.

And a third candidate who stands with us, State Senator Mark Herring for
Attorney General, came from behind with our support and is heading into an
apparent recount.

Because of supporters like you, we were involved in each one of these
important races, matching the NRA’s investment dollar-for-dollar.

*The more people learn about our big wins in Virginia, the greater the
impact. So please join us in spreading the word about last night’s
victories on social media or by forwarding this email to your friends. It’s

Like & Share on
| Spread the Word on

This is why we started Americans for Responsible Solutions after the
tragedy at Sandy Hook — to stand as a counterweight to the gun lobby in
Washington, D.C. and all 50 states. And without your continued support of
our efforts, victories like the ones we experienced last night wouldn’t be

Thank you for standing with us as we continue this fight.
All the best,

Gabby Giffords & Mark Kelly
Americans for Responsible Solutions BB


Violence in Your ER, Talks to U-M and WSU Medical Students

What follows will be part of the newly energized PPGV Blog-
Please write to Andy or Me to join in with your Gun Violence story or message!
Go to PPGV.org to view the entire blog.

Children raised in a Violent Environment Found Likely to Commit a Violent Crime

On October 29, 2013 the Public Health Institute hosted a webinar on gun violence entitled Dialogue4Health. Important to docs was the work by Cure Violence of University of Illinois at Chicago described by Charlie Ransford, MPP. They have found that violence is learned early in life, and that children raised in a violent environment are 30 times more likely to perpetuate a violent crime. Using an infectious disease-like approach they have worked successfully to decrease the likelihood of repetition working with likely offenders. Victims may plan retaliation while in your ER following a shooting. So be aware as shooting victims may take action then. See Dialogue4Health.com for details.


Dr. Walden and Dr. Zweifler engaged medical students at Wayne State and University of Michigan during October 2013.

U of Michigan American Medical Student Association (AMSA), led by M1 Adriana Coleska, sponsored a presentation by PPGV on October 28, 2013. Andy Zweifler and Jerry Walden talked to a group of interested students, some of whom added their names to our mailing list.

A few days earlier on October 25th Andy, Angelos Constantinidis, and Jerry traveled to Wayne State University to talk to medical student members of AMSA and a few faculty members about gun violence. An animated discussion followed and many of the medical students joined PPGV. It’s always good to be with idealistic, future young physicians. We talked about the “11th Law”, i.e., “Family doesn’t let Family members live in a house with guns if they are struggling with mental illness”- a suicide prevention rule and many other facets of the problem. Kelly Hendershot, AMSA president and 2nd year student at WSU Medical School facilitated this event.

Walden and Zweifler spoke before the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners in support of a petition to repeal Michigan’s Stand Your Ground law on Oct. 16.

After hearing from both sides on the issue, the Board of Commissioners voted 5-4 to send the petition to all state officials. The majority of commissioners felt the law was dangerous.


Moms Demand Action on Gun Sense Rally

April 13th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Dr. Cheryl Farmer, Dr. Cindy Krueger, Dr. Angelos Constantinides, and Dr. Andrew Zweifler demonstrated in Lansing, Michigan, with Moms Demand Action on Gun Sense . More than 100 people were there. Dr. Zweifler distributed information about Physicians for Preventing Gun Violence. Dr. Farmer did a lot of work on this, and had this photograph taken with her camera. Right to left: Dr. Zweifler, Dr. Farmer, Dr. Constantinidis, and Dr. Kreuger.


New Friends and a Look at Stand Your Ground Michigan, Feb. 8

February 15th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Dear Docs and Friends,

On Friday, Feb. 8, Andy and I went to ALPACT, Advocates and Leaders for
Police and Community Trust, a group of law enforcement, legislators, and
civil rights people that meets monthly to discuss issues related to the
community building in Southeast Michigan. It is co-led by law enforcement
and a civil rights or community leader.  We presented on Michigan’s Stand
Your Ground Law variously also known as the self defense or justifiable
homicide law. We compared Michigan’s law to that of Florida and used data
culled from a MLive week long series from May of 2012. Stand Your Ground
allows you to shoot if you feel threatened outside your home- extending
your “castle” to shoot beyond your house. There was a good discussion
following and we made some new allies. You can look at our attached slides
and note that many of these were black on black deaths, males, ages usually
18-40, and most of the victims were unarmed while committing a crime. There
was some general concern that this law is another Public Health disaster
and deserves our concern. For more information go to our website at PPGV.org

Jerry and Andy

Challenging Stand Your Ground

February 8th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Dr. Walden and Dr. Zweifler spoke against Michigan’s Stand Your Ground Law to Advocates and Leaders for Police and Community Trust (ALPACT), a group of lawyers, law enforcement personnel, and judges working on community building.

Gun Offender Registry Acts (GORAs) by Jerry Walden

February 6th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

The organization, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, offers useful information about local initiatives to enact Gun Offender Registry Acts. An extract from their website follows.

Studies indicate people who carry illegal guns pose a very high risk of recidivism. Recent Baltimore statistics show that 42% of defendants charged with felony gun crimes have prior gun arrests. In New York City, when compared to other felons, those convicted of felony gun possession were more likely to be re-arrested, and their re-arrests were more likely to involve violence (e.g., murder, sex offenses, robbery, or assault), 42% compared to 25%, plus they were four times more likely to be arrested for homicide.

Requirements: Gun Offender Registry Acts (GORAs), like those passed in Baltimore in 2007 and in New York City in 2006, require defendants convicted of specified gun crimes to: register their addresses with the police; Verify them in person every 6 months; and promptly notify the police if they change addresses for a period of time following their conviction or period of incarceration.
Covered gun crimes: Each city’s ordinance lists the specific crimes that trigger reporting because they are tied to high recidivism rates in data about that city.
Duration: A person remains on the Gun Offender Registry for a period of years – three in Baltimore, four in New York City – from the date of conviction or release from imprisonment, whichever is later.
• Penalties: In both cities, failure to abide by these conditions is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail or a fine up to $1000 or both.
• Analogue: GORAs were built upon Megan’s Laws, which have proven to be effective enforcement tools against sex offenders around the country.

The New York City law also requires individuals convicted of criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree to register their current addresses and personally report to the New York City Police Department (NYPD) every six months.

Learn more at: Gun Offender Registration

Michigan State Medical Society Meeting

January 30th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Dr. Zweifler met with Dr. Cindy Kreuger on resolutions on preventing gun violence for consideration by the Michigan State Medical Society.

Meeting with Congressman Dingell

January 30th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Dr. Walden visited U.S. Congressman John Dingell, with other members of the National Association on Mental Illness to advise him on needed changes in gun control laws.

Initial Executive Committee Meeting

January 8th, 2013 | Posted by admin in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

The first meeting of the Executive Committee occurred on Jan. 8, 2013.