In light of Wednesday's Washington Post article regarding the Virginia Department of Health, we write to reaffirm that racism and gun violence are public health crises. Gun violence is a scourge that kills over 1,000 Virginians every year. Racism continues to harm people of color and exacerbates unjustified health disparities beginning before birth and lasting throughout life.
We proudly stand with our partners who, along with VPHA, successfully advocated for the Virginia General Assembly to declare racism a public health crisis. We also stand with gun violence victims, their families, and all those advocating for policies to end the violence that plagues our Commonwealth and nation.
We applaud the heroic work Virginia's public health professionals do every day to keep Virginians safe and healthy. We will continue to work with them to address these public health crises and to make Virginia the healthiest state in the nation.
Kim Baskette, PhD, CHES
Ben Barber, MPP