State leaders and community members concerned with gun violence ahead of open carry law enacting Sunday

Local News

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – On Thursday, a second community forum on gun violence was hosted by State Representatives Wendell Gilliard and Marvin Pendarvis. The initial reason for the forum was to follow up on what solutions could be taken ahead of South Carolina’s Open Carry Law being enacted on August 15th.

As opposed to laying out solutions for the Lowcountry, many community members shared their concerns for the violence in the community and what they deemed as ‘underlying problems’.

Dr. Ashley Hinks, a trauma surgeon for the Medical University of South Carolina said more common-sense policies need to be made and more intervention programs, like the one at the hospital, need to be funded. The MUSC Hospital and Community Violence Prevention and Intervention Program consists of a team of men serving as advocates for those impacted by gun violence. 

Dr. Hink says the program is vital to the community. For every one gun-violence death, there are five gun-violence survivors.

I’m the one taking care of your loved ones and your community members when they come in maimed from gun violence. I’m the one giving those messages to family members that they might never see their child again or their child might not walk again…the reality is even when they walk out with a soft tissue wound their life is never the same

Dr. Ashley Hinks, MUSC

Also present on Thursday were Special Agent Richard Johnson with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), Chief Luther Reynolds with the Charleston Police Department (CPD), Elder James Johnson with the Racial Justice Network, and additional Charleston City Council members.

For more on the intervention program, click here.

For more on the Open Carry Law, click here.

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