Web Forum

Exploring the Link Between Guns and Violence
Wednesday, July 10, 2013 | 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM Pacific

Of the roughly 16,000 homicides that happen in the U.S. each year, approximately two thirds are committed with a firearm. Since 1982, there have been over 60 mass shootings in the U.S., and of all the guns used in them, more than three quarters were legally obtained.

These deaths are preventable and the conversation about violence prevention and gun policy in the U.S. has begun. Unfortunately, the public health role is not often recognized or included in the discussion. As the debate continues in Congress, state legislatures and on Main Street, it is important to understand the evidence related to violence prevention and gun policy in the U.S. and the role of the public health community in these debates.

Dialogue4Health is an internet-based broadcasting platform that has produced nearly 183 Web Forums for over 27,000 participants. In 2013, Dialogue4Health and American Public Health Association will host a series of two Web Forums that will provide a space for an open discussion on violence prevention, gun policy and public health. The Web Forums will bring together speakers of diverse backgrounds and knowledge to discuss the current state of violence in our country and engage participants on the future of violence prevention.

The Web Forum will:

  • Provide an overview of gun violence and gun laws in the U.S.;
  • Elaborate upon the link between guns, violence, the media and mental health using the current research and evidence; and
  • Make the case for gun violence as a public health issue.






    Deborah Prothrow-Stith, MD
    Spencer Stuart
    Adjunct Professor
    Department of Health Policy and Management
    Harvard School of Public Health
    Urban Networks to Increase Thriving Youth (UNITY)
    Boston, MA

    Deborah Prothrow-Stith, MDDeborah Prothrow-Stith specializes in senior-level searches for academic medical centers, public health schools, healthcare systems and hospitals at Spencer Stuart. Prior to Spencer Stuart, Deborah served as the Massachusetts public health commissioner. In that role, she expanded treatment programs for AIDS patients, increased funding for drug rehabilitation and launched a statewide office to prevent youth violence. She is recognized as one of the creators of a nationwide movement to prevent violence, and her book Deadly Consequences: How Violence Is Destroying Our Teenage Population and a Plan to Begin Solving the Problem was the first to present the public health perspective on the topic to a mass audience. She is also the co-author of Sugar and Spice and No Longer Nice: How We Can Stop Girls’ Violence; Murder Is No Accident: Understanding and Preventing Youth Violence in America; and Health: Skills for Wellness.
    (www.hsph.harvard.edu/health-policy-and-management and http://preventioninstitute.org/unity)

    Stephen Teret, JD, MPH
    Johns Hopkins Center for Law and the Public’s Health
    Founding Director
    Center for Gun Policy and Research
    Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
    Baltimore, MD

    Stephen Teret, JD, MPHStephen Teret is a Professor of Health and Public Policy in the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, where he directs the Center for Law and the Public’s Health. He is the founding Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research. Professor Teret has spent more than three decades working on gun violence prevention, and has advised the federal government, as well as state and local governments of gun policy. (www.jhsph.edu/research/centers-and-institutes/center-for-law-and-the-publics-health and www.jhsph.edu/research/centers-and-institutes/johns-hopkins-center-for-gun-policy-and-research)

    David Hemenway, PhD
    Department of Health Policy and Management
    Harvard Injury Control Research Center
    Harvard School of Public Health
    Boston, MA

    David Hemenway, PhDDavid Hemenway, Ph.D., is an economist and Professor at Harvard School of Public Health and a former James Marsh Visiting Professor at Large at the University of Vermont. He is Director of the Harvard Injury Control Research Center and the Harvard Youth Violence Prevention Center. He received the Excellence in Science award from the injury and violence section of the American Public Health Association and fellowships from the Pew, Soros and Robert Wood Johnson foundations. In 2012 he was recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as one of the twenty “most influential injury and violence professionals over the past 20 years.” Dr. Hemenway has written 175 journal articles and is sole author of five books. Recent books include Private Guns Public Health (U Michigan Press 2006) and While We Were Sleeping: Success Stories in Injury and Violence Prevention (U California Press 2009). Dr. Hemenway has received ten Harvard teaching awards. (www.hsph.harvard.edu/health-policy-and-management and www.hsph.harvard.edu/hicrc)


    Georges Benjamin, MD, FACP, FNAPA, FACEP (E), Hon FRSPH
    Executive Director
    American Public Health Association
    Washington, DC

    Georges Benjamin, MDGeorges C. Benjamin, MD, FACP, FACEP(E), Hon FRSPH, is the executive director of the American Public Health Association (APHA), the United States oldest and largest organization of public health professionals. For the last 20 years he has been actively practicing public health at the local, national and international level. He is the publisher of the American Journal of Public Health, The Nation’s Health Newspaper and the APHA’s publication on infectious diseases, the Communicable Disease Manual (CCDM). Dr. Benjamin is a graduate of the Illinois Institute of Technology and the University of Illinois, College of Medicine. He is board-certified in internal medicine and a fellow of the American College of Physicians; a Fellow Emeritus of the American College of Emergency Physicians; an honorary fellow of the Royal Society of Public Health; a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, and a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. (www.apha.org)


The following documents are PDF versions of the speakers’ presentations and are intended to be used for reference only.


Teret/Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health


The following documents provide important background information that can enhance the Web Forum experience.


The following website provides important background information that can enhance the Web Forum experience.

Harvard Injury Control Research Center | Firearms Research
Blog: Gun Violence Is ‘A Problem We Don’t Need to Have’ – The Public Health Approach


The organizations listed below have come together to sponsor this important effort:

Public Health Institute Logo Kaiser Permanente

Public Health Institute

The Jacob and Valeria Langeloth Foundation