MNAAP Supports Common Sense Firearm Control Measures


The news this week of the March 27th mass shooting in Nashville involving children serves as a somber reminder that the fight to protect children and youth from firearm violence continues to be a top priority for pediatricians.

Accidental firearm injury and homicide are major health concerns for Minnesota’s youth. Firearms are also the leading method of suicide for adolescents aged 15 to 19. MNAAP supports common sense firearm control measures including expanding criminal background checks for all firearm transfers and sales, enacting “red flag” laws to protect those who may be a danger to themselves or others, authorizing the use of firearm ownership data for public health research or epidemiologic investigation, strengthening existing safe storage laws, and awareness efforts of the role that firearms play in suicides, especially in youth and adolescents.

Past MNAAP President Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, advocated for these measures in a Star Tribune Readers Write submission he authored. Dr. Berkowitz wrote, “If we are serious about honoring their memories, our legislators must pass commonsense gun-violence-prevention laws and stop hiding behind the Second Amendment. In addition, we all must talk to our communities about gun violence and teach that there are alternatives to using guns to settle disagreements.” 

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