District B City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell will join a group of physicians and children’s health advocates leading a vigil against gun violence at 5:30 p.m. tonight on the steps of City Hall.
For details, see the news release below:
On December 27th, 2012 at 5:30PM Doctors for Gun Control (DFGC) and Residents Engaged in Advocating for Child Health (R.E.A.C.H.) will lead a vigil on the steps of City Hall in honor of the Newtown, CT victims and against gun violence in New Orleans.
Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell, Father Bill Terry of St. Anna’s Episcopal Church, and Dr. Pritesh Gandhi, a Pediatrics & Internal Medicine resident, will lead the vigil. DFGC is calling on local and state leaders to protect and increase resources for city-wide mental health services, support a renewed ban on assault weapons, limit high capacity ammunition clips, and integrate local health leaders in the fight against gun violence.
“One of the many roots of violence in our city is a broken mental health system that does not attend to the needs of our people,” says Father Bill Terry. “The volume of weapons on the streets; legal or illegal; permeate every neighborhood…the central theme should be to deescalate urban violence, not escalate it.”
DFGC believes that gun violence is a major public health threat in New Orleans – on par with childhood obesity and cardiovascular disease – and therefore deserves the full resources, evidence-based research, and attention of health professionals.
“We can’t solve violence and the urban poverty that drives it behind the sanitized walls of our clinics and hospitals – this isn’t about checklist medicine, its about humanism” says Dr. Pritesh Gandhi, a Tulane Med-Peds resident and Founder of DFGC. “We need cultural change driven by the pillars of our community – churches, schools, family, & government. Preach, educate, eat dinner together, and ban assault weapons. Let’s start with that.”
WHAT: Candlelight Vigil
WHEN: 5:30PM, December 27th, 2012 (Tonight)
WHERE: Steps of City Hall in downtown New Orleans – 1300 Perdido
WHO: DFGC, R.E.A.C.H., St. Anna’s Episcopal Church, Doctors for America
Doctors for Gun Control is a New Orleans based group started by Dr. Pritesh Gandhi, an Internal Medicine & Pediatrics resident at Tulane University. Its mission is to advocate on behalf of unrepresented children with immediate goals to ban assault weapons, limit high capacity ammunition clips, and increase access to mental healthcare.