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Statement by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners on Gun Violence

AUSTIN, TX -- The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) stands with the families and friends whose loved ones were murdered in the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. The continued tragic situation with gun violence has gone on far too long and must be addressed by our policymakers, both nationally and in each state. Nurse practitioners are passionate in their care for patients, whether they are treating individuals in hospital settings where they see gunshot victims day after day, or managing the immediate and lingering negative consequences in patients of all ages in their clinics.

Nurse practitioners feel strongly that students should be able to go to school each day with a focus on learning, not wondering whether or not they will come home alive and should know confidently that their school is a safe and secure place.

AANP supports putting politics aside and focusing on common sense reforms that reduce access to automatic weapons and high capacity magazines, increasing the age to purchase certain firearms, and strengthening the federal background check system, while maintaining the individual’s right to keep and bear arms under the 2nd Amendment.

In addition, AANP supports state and federal investment for additional research to look at this major crisis, including a focus on expanding access to mental health treatment and prevention. We continue to encourage policymakers to come to grips with the senseless violence in our country. Our children and our patients depend on it.

Joyce Knestrick, PhD, C-FNP, APRN, FAANP

The American Association of Nurse Practitioners
(AANP) is the largest professional membership organization for nurse practitioners (NPs) of all specialties. It represents the interests of the more than 234,000 licensed NPs in the U.S. AANP provides legislative leadership at the local, state and national levels, advancing health policy; promoting excellence in practice, education and research; and establishing standards that best serve NP patients and other health care consumers. As The Voice of the Nurse Practitioner®, AANP represents the interests of NPs as providers of high-quality, cost-effective, comprehensive, patient-centered health care. To locate a nurse practitioner in your community, go to For more information about NPs, visit