ENA President Jennifer Schmitz Statement on Recent Gun Violence

June 3, 2022

ENA President Jennifer Schmitz released the following message today about recent acts of gun violence.

"Today is recognized as National Gun Violence Awareness Day and the time is now to prevent the tragic consequences of gun violence.

When a patient comes through the ED doors, we do our absolute best to care for every single person, every single time. The compassion engrained in emergency nurses motivates us to help people understand how to stay out of the emergency department in the first place by educating patients on avoiding illness and preventing injury.

It should be that simple – treat our patients and do what we can to educate and advocate for ways to keep people healthy, safe and out of the ED. The simplicity of that mission has been drowned out by the reality of the public health crisis of gun violence and gunshot victims being commonplace in our emergency departments.

Following the recent mass shootings across the country, emergency nurses are feeling overwhelmed, stressed, pained, and angered. You are on the front lines of a serious public health crisis, and ENA stands with all emergency nurses during these challenging times and remains resolute in driving change.

Three years ago, ENA publicly recognized gun violence as an epidemic and public health crisis. In partnership with our members, The American Foundation for Firearm Injury Reduction in Medicine and the Emergency Medicine Foundation we have been working to affect positive change in this national crisis.

As we look to the future, ENA is recommitting our efforts to create healthier and safer communities for all and to support you as you continue to care for the victims of gun violence. ENA will collaborate with key partners to develop additional solutions; support legislation devoted to decreasing firearm injuries and deaths and increasing safety; develop additional educational resources on safety and injury prevention; and create more self-care and coping resources to help you following a mass casualty event.  

ENA is committed to being an active leader in addressing the epidemic of gun violence and encourages every emergency nurse to use their voice to drive change that is necessary to reduce the number of firearm-related injuries in our emergency departments and communities."

About the Emergency Nurses Association

The Emergency Nurses Association is the premier professional nursing association dedicated to defining the future of emergency nursing through advocacy, education, research, innovation, and leadership. Founded in 1970, ENA has proven to be an indispensable resource to the global emergency nursing community. With more than 50,000 members worldwide, ENA advocates for patient safety, develops industry-leading practice standards and guidelines, and guides emergency healthcare public policy. ENA members have expertise in triage, patient care, disaster preparedness, and all aspects of emergency care. Additional information is available at www.ena.org.

ENA Media Contact:

Dan Campana
Director of Communications