Community Gun Buyback Program Offers Gift Cards to Stop Injuries

GIVE US A HAND: TURN IN A GUN 

(Hartford, Conn. November 29, 2012)  Each year, hundreds of crimes and accidental injuries occur in Connecticut as a result of the misuse of handguns.  For the third year, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, HartfordHospital, and SaintFrancis Hospital and Medical Center collaborated with the City of Hartford, Hartford Police Department, and the Hartford State’s Attorney’s Office to help get guns off the streets. 

A Community Gun Buyback Program was held on Saturday, December 1st from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at the Community Renewal Team in Hartford.

“We are once again proud to support a gun buyback program for the citizens of Connecticut,” said Brendan Campbell, MD, Director of Pediatric Trauma, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. “This effort between Hartford’s three trauma centers, as well as City and State officials, has removed hundreds of unwanted firearms from Connecticut homes so that they cannot be stolen by a criminal or found by a child,” concluded Dr. Campbell. 

The Gun Buyback Program provided gift cards to individuals who turned in an operable firearm.  A $75 gift was given for a handgun or revolver, and a $25 gift card for the return of a shotgun or rifle.  Guns were asked to be unloaded, placed in a clear plastic bag, and inside a paper bag or box.

All guns received are destroyed unless forensic testing confirms they have been used in the commission of a crime.  Non-working guns, black-powder weapons, BB guns, flare guns, and ammunition could be turned in; however, they were not eligible for a gift card.

“We want our community to be safe,’ said Lenworth Jacobs, MD, Director of Trauma and Emergency Medicine, Hartford Hospital.  “We want to make sure our children can play safely outside without fear of hearing gunshots or being accidentally hit by a stray bullet.  This program aims to collect as many guns as possible with no questions asked,” added Dr. Jacobs.

“If guns could speak, one can only wonder what stories they could tell about what they have done in the past or what they could do in the future,” said William Marshall, DO, Director of Trauma, Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center.  “Ridding our streets of guns is a crucial part of our effort to make neighborhoods safer for everyone,” added Dr. Marshall.

About Connecticut Children’s Medical Center 

Connecticut Children's Medical Center, the regions only academic medical center dedicated exclusively to the care of children, is committed to improving children's physical and emotional health through family-centered care, research, education and advocacy.  Named one of America's Best Children's Hospitals by U.S. News and World Report, Connecticut Children's offers a full range of quality pediatric services at its hospitals in Hartford and Waterbury, Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) in Hartford and Farmington, Specialty Care Centers in Fairfield, Farmington, Glastonbury, Hartford and Shelton and 11 other practice locations.  

For more information, visit www.connecticutchildrens.org and connect on Facebook at www.facebook.com/connecticutchildrens.

About Hartford Hospital 

Hartford Hospital, founded in 1854, is one of the largest teaching hospitals and tertiary care centers in New England with one of the region's busiest surgery practices. It is annually ranked among America's Best Hospitals by US News & World Report and has been recognized nationally for the quality of many of its programs, including cardiology, cancer, stroke and joint and spine care. The 867-bed regional referral center provides high-quality care in all clinical disciplines. Among its divisions is The Institute of Living, a 114-bed mental health facility with a national and international reputation of excellence. Jefferson House, a 104-bed long-term care facility, is also a special division of Hartford Hospital. The hospital’s major centers of clinical excellence include cardiology, oncology, emergency services and trauma, mental health, women’s health, orthopedics, bloodless surgery and advanced organ transplantation. Hartford Hospital owns and operates the state’s only air ambulance system, LIFE STAR.  

About Saint Francis 

Saint Francis Care is an integrated healthcare delivery system established by Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center, an anchor institution in north central Connecticut since 1897.  Licensed for 617 beds and 65 bassinets, it is a major teaching hospital and the largest Catholic hospital in New England.  Other major entities of Saint Francis Care include The Mount Sinai Rehabilitation Hospital, the Connecticut Joint Replacement Institute, the Hoffman Heart and Vascular Institute of Connecticut, the Saint Francis/Mount Sinai Regional Cancer Center, and the Joyce D. and Andrew J. Mandell Center for Comprehensive Multiple Sclerosis Care and Neuroscience Research.  Its services are supported by a network of five major Access Centers and eight additional medical office centers sited throughout the region.  For more information, visit www.stfranciscare.com.