Meck County takes new approach toward gun violence

Meck County takes new approach toward gun violence

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Mecklenburg County leaders are taking a new approach to fight gun violence in Charlotte.

They're treating the violence as a public health crisis.

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The Health Department director is working with Atrium Health on ways to stop the violence before it starts.

Part of the plan is to help bring community groups together who are working individually to face the problem on a united front.

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Clearing the childcare waiting list is another big project, which could help hospital programs discover the root cause of a child's violent behavior.

"Violence is a public health issue, but guns are still an issue," Commission Chair George Dunlap, D-District 3, said. "And, so while we're not taking away anybody's guns, chance are we going to have some discussions about, ‘What is responsible gun ownership?'"

A new report from the county's health directors shows that 74% of homicides in the community involve guns and 87% of murders involving children include firearms.

There have been 76 homicides in Charlotte this year.

There was a total of 57 in 2018.