With well over one million violent crimes taking place throughout America each year, including more than 16,000 homicides, Assemblywomen Cleopatra Tucker (D-Essex), Angela McKnight (D-Hudson) and Carol Murphy (D-Burlington) have sponsored a resolution that declares violence a public health crisis.
Upon the resolution (AR-17) passing the full Assembly Monday, 74-0-1, the sponsors released the following joint statement:
“Violence is so pervasive in our society today that we can tend to normalize it, but we cannot ignore its significance.
“In 2019, our country suffered more mass killings than any other year on record, while our rate of firearm deaths continues to rise. The constant news of gun violence in our schools, neighborhoods, places of worship and so on leaves many people on edge while desensitizing others to the suffering it causes.
“There are over 433,000 victims of sexual assault in the United States each year. These incidents cultivate an environment of fear that women in particular must live with every day.
“We will never forget the attack in Jersey City last year that took the lives of four New Jersey residents, and we must not forget the hundreds of lives lost each year to homicide – including those who die from gun violence.
“We must bring attention to this statewide issue by declaring violence a public health crisis and continuing to do everything we can to reduce its prevalence.”
The resolution has been filed with the Secretary of State and will be transmitted to the Commissioner of Health and the Attorney General.