State Rep. David Bowen
Press Release

Rep. Bowen Demands Action in Response to Escalating Milwaukee Gun Violence

Rep Bowen Statement on Milwaukee Gun Violence

By - Jul 10th, 2015 09:51 am

MILWAUKEE – Rep. David Bowen (D-Milwaukee) issued the following statement today in response to the devastating violence that shook the city of Milwaukee over the past week:

“I have requested that Governor Walker call a state of emergency and exercise his executive powers to the greatest extent possible to respond to the escalating public health epidemic of gun violence that continues to take lives in the City of Milwaukee and throughout our state. I asked the governor to do everything in his power to curtail the flow of guns to Milwaukee youth and repeat offenders who acquire guns through straw purchases, and called for an analysis of fiscal allocations to preventative versus punitive response efforts in order to identify needed changes to how we react to these incidents.”

“This week, ten deaths occurred over the course of just seven days, pushing the number of homicides in Milwaukee to an estimated 84 this year, nearly surpassing the total for all of 2014 and doubling the amount that had occurred by this time last year. These repeated episodes of violence devastate families and traumatize those who live, work, and play in the neighborhoods and communities where the violence occurs. It is clear that immediate, decisive action is required to prevent further bloodshed, suffering, and loss of life.”

“In coming days I will continue to reach out to fellow Milwaukee legislators and officials on the state, county, and local levels to form a coalition committed to reducing the harm and suffering that so many families are coping with. I have reached out to trauma response professionals and community leaders, and am working to develop a strategy for deploying trauma informed care specialists, psychologists, and grief counselors to the populations traumatized by these repeated tragedies. Citizens have a right to safety and a high quality of life, and as elected officials we must act to forge public and private partnerships that confront this crisis.”

“These incidents in our state and throughout our nation confirm what many of us already know – that our country is in desperate need of common-sense reforms to gun laws to prevent guns from falling into the wrong hands. However, as we work to achieve those statutory goals, the situation in Milwaukee demands a rapid response in the form of trauma mitigation services. No matter our political differences, we must act together to help our residents heal, because if we ignore this pain, those whose lives have been disrupted by this violence may act irrationally, leading to further harm.”

“It is my sincere hope that we will be able to work together to find a solution to this crisis so that additional lives are not needlessly lost.”

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