My Take: Gun violence and youth suicide

My Take: Gun violence and youth suicide

Hide caption Youth suicide using a firearm is at a record high, increasing by 56 percent over the past decade. [STOCK IMAGE] COVID-19 continues to dominate most aspects of our lives. Many of us are exhausted by it. We are tired of thinking about how to balance life, kids, work, school and everything else. Yet, COVID-19 has and is continuing to uncover our challenges as a society — healthcare, social justice issues, racial equity, education and gun violence, to name a few. It may not be a surprise that this is also impacting our children in a profound and frightening way. Gun violence is a public health epidemic. A recent report in Everytown for Gun Safety has revealed youth suicide using a firearm is at a record high, increasing by 56 percent over the past decade. Related, gun sales in the U.S. increased , and by August, reached the fifth-highest month on record according to the FBI. In Michigan, gun sales jumped 210 percent and small firearms increased by 85 percent between March 2019 and March 2020. Between March and August there were an additional 11.8 million guns purchased. There are many likely reasons for the increase, although one thing is clear — first-time gun owners and existing gun owners are buying guns at an alarmingly increased rate. Youth suicide has also reached an all-time high and it is related. It is the second-leading cause of death for youth and teens. A quarter of all teens have contemplated suicide […]

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