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Connecticut legislators hold roundtable on the mental health impacts of gun violence

Murphy Mental Illness.jpg
Michael Lyle, Jr.
/
WSHU
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra held a roundtable in Waterbury on the mental health impacts of gun violence. Senator Chris Murphy and Reps. Rosa DeLauro and Jahana Hayes (D-CT) were also in attendance.

Connecticut legislators held a roundtable discussion Wednesday in Waterbury to discuss the mental health impacts of gun violence.

Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) said the roundtable was not only a way to celebrate the recent passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which strengthens background checks and keeps guns out of the hands of dangerous people, but also to demand more for the cause.

“Nothing in this bill is enough,” Murphy said. “The changes in gun laws are not close to enough. The investments in our mental health system are not close to enough. So it’s a moment to say we’re going to make a difference with what we have, but we are not giving up.”

With recent mass shootings across the country, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said his team will work with the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention to gather data on why supporting mental health programs is critical when it comes to traumatic events that include gun violence.

“While we understand that mental health is in crisis and we have to treat it as such, gun violence is a public health crisis,” Becerra said. “And we must treat it as such.”

The bipartisan legislation was signed into law by President Joe Biden last month.

Becerra was also joined in the roundtable discussion with Reps. Rosa DeLauro and Jahana Hayes (D-CT).

Mike Lyle joined WSHU Public Radio in early 2021 as a News Anchor, and was brought on full time to cover Connecticut news. He is an anchor/reporter at New England Public Media, a journalist with the National Press Club, and a weekend/fill-in news anchor at WTIC News/Talk 1080.