PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Northwest doctors and faith leaders told KOIN 6 Monday that they view the country’s gun crisis as a “public health emergency” and are calling for action.

“It is a public health emergency that needs to be addressed with public health measures,” said Mike Sinanan, the President of the Washington State Medical Association. We believe common-sense measures to reduce the availability of guns to the wrong people is a critical step in handling this public health emergency.”

Sinanan also said that emergency rooms in the Northwest have been busy with gunshot victims, and that, in the case of high-velocity weapons, most people who are shot have long-term disabilities from their injuries if they survive.

“There’s a lot of bleeding, pain, and with high-velocity weapons, there’s an impact far beyond the entry site because of the velocity of the bullet,” Sinanan said. “It’s the rare patient who doesn’t have a long-term disability.”

Members of Lift Every Voice Oregon are trying to get legislation onto the November ballot that would help IP17, a petition that would create a permit for purchase in Oregon and ban large-capacity magazines.

“We felt it’s not enough to offer prayers, although that’s what we do as faith leaders. But it is our time to step forward to say enough is enough and we need to take action,” said Rabbi Michael Cahana. “To get legislation onto the November ballot, IP17, to create a permit to purchase, for guns, so people go through complete background checks, safety training, and to ban large-capacity magazines.”

“It’s the public health issue of guns, that’s all of our concern,” added Rev. Dr. Mark Knutson.