County Executive Pittman, Arundel Arundel County Department of Health Announce Strategic Plan to Reduce Gun Violence in Anne Arundel County

June 29, 2022

Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman and Anne Arundel County Department of Health announce the release of a strategic plan to reduce gun violence led by the county’s Gun Violence Intervention Team (GVIT).

Using a structured public health approach, the plan identifies data-driven and evidence-based strategies that engage community members, law enforcement, mental and behavioral health agencies, and gun violence intervention organizations in collaborative advocacy, prevention and response initiatives.

“Our Gun Violence Intervention Team has done extraordinary work bringing all county agencies and residents together to confront gun violence as a public health crisis,” said County Executive Pittman. “While politicians across the country play games with this crisis, we in Anne Arundel County are working to save lives.”

The strategic plan includes six overarching goals and corresponding objectives, strategies, evaluation metrics and future steps. It is a culmination of the analysis of recent, local gun violence trends, a systematic review of strategic plans from gun violence teams across the country, and input from community members. It incorporates the recommendations made by the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force (GVPTF) formed by an Executive Order signed by County Executive Pittman in 2019.

“We recognize that guns are in society, but we must eliminate the violence that leads to countless deaths and injuries,” Health Officer Dr. Nilesh Kalyanaraman said. “At the root of this are difficult problems that require working in partnership with communities using evidence-based strategies. It’s a challenge our county is ready for.”

The release of the strategic plan falls on a difficult anniversary – the day a gunman killed Gerald Fischman, Rob Hiaasen, John McNamara, Rebecca Smith and Wendi Winters, five employees of the Gazette newsroom. The document is intended to be an all-in-one resource for the community and blueprint for the future of gun violence prevention efforts in the county that was birthed out of the tragic incident. There are links, resources, and graphics to show the progress of the coalition. A range of experts from Anne Arundel County, Annapolis City agencies, nonprofits, Anne Arundel Community College, and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health lent their expertise as members of the GVIT and in developing the plan.

County Executive Steuart Pittman and Anne Arundel Health Officer Dr. Kalyanaraman, joined by Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley, community advocates and members of the GVIT, will introduce and discuss the strategic plan today at 5:00pm during an event at the Guardians of the First Amendment Memorial on Newman and Compromise Streets in Annapolis.