This special collection brings together evidence and insights from nonprofits, foundations, and research organizations working to understand the full impact of firearm use and gun violence in the US. By providing us with analyses of current state and federal laws as well as valuable data on suicides, homicides, accidents, and mass shootings, these organizations seek to inform sound public policy and to curb this ongoing public health epidemic.

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"Gun Violence" by M+R Glasgow licensed under CC 2.0

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Stopping School Shootings: Lessons from Parkland, Oxford, Uvalde, and the Federal Commission on School Safety

August 2, 2022

Key PointsAfter the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, President Donald Trump tasked a multiagency effort to review best practices for school safety, which issued a landmark Federal Commission on School Safety (FCSS) report containing practical and actionable advice to keep students safe.After the school shooting in Oxford, Michigan, which—judging by a lawsuit filed against the school district—appeared to parallel the Parkland shooting with red flags missed and administrative missteps made, the Biden administration declared that the FCSS no longer reflected federal policy.There is a willful campaign from social justice advocacy organizations to fight against some of the key best practices FCSS identified. An examination of the alleged circumstances of the Oxford shooting suggests that school leaders should take their cues on school safety not from advocacy organizations or the Biden administration but from a careful evaluation of previous tragedies.

Child and Teen Firearm Mortality in the U.S. and Peer Countries

July 8, 2022

Firearms recently became the number one cause of death for children in the United States, surpassing motor vehicle deaths and those caused by other injuries.We examine how gun violence and other types of firearm deaths among children and teens in the United States compares to rates in similarly large and wealthy countries. We select comparable large and wealthy countries by identifying Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) member nations with above median GDP and above median GDP per capita in at least one year from 2010-2020. Using the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Wonder database and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study data, we compare fatality rates and disability estimates for people ages 1 through 19. (Since estimates were not available for children ages 1-17 alone, young adults ages 18 and 19 are grouped with children for the purposes of this brief).We find that the United States is alone among peer nations in the number of child firearm deaths. In no other similarly large or wealthy country are firearm deaths in the top 4 causes of mortality let alone the number 1 cause of death among children.

Educational Costs of Gun Violence: Implications for Washington, DC

July 8, 2022

Research indicates that gun violence and violent crime can negatively affect educational outcomes including test scores, graduation rates, and academic engagement. In this brief, we summarize research on this topic, situate this evidence in the context of the geography of gun violence and educational outcomes in DC, and describe implications for DC communities.

Recent Trends in Mental Health and Substance Use Concerns Among Adolescents

June 28, 2022

Concerns about adolescent mental health and substance use have increased recently, particularly in light of gun violence and the COVID-19 pandemic. In recent years, many adolescents have experienced worsened emotional health, increased stress, and a lack of peer connection. Other mental health and substance use concerns are on the rise – including drug overdose deaths, self-harm, and eating disorders. Simultaneously, adolescents are spending more time on screens and many report adverse experiences such as parental abuse, hunger, and job loss – all of which can be linked to poor mental health outcomes.This brief explores the state of adolescent mental health and substance use in recent years, highlighting differences observed by sex, racial and ethnic groups, and sexual orientation. Throughout this analysis, we define adolescents as individuals ages 12 to 17. Although data on adolescent mental health is limited, where possible, we draw upon data from the 2020 National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH), which asks parents or guardians questions on behalf of their children and adolescents. We also include data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other surveys conducted during the pandemic.

Gun Violence Is Having a Devastating Impact on Young People

June 10, 2022

From 2019 to 2020, gun homicides among children and teenagers rose dramatically. As a result, firearms are now the leading cause of death for Americans ages 1 to 17. In addition, young Americans are suffering from a rapid and devastating rise in school shootings, increasingly mourning the loss of a parent due to firearm-related violence, and experiencing nonfatal gunshot injuries and gunshot threats at an alarming frequency.Despite these concerning trends, some elected officials refuse to protect our youth from gun-related crimes. Instead, they are blocking commonsense gun safety laws and even pushing for counterproductive measures that would further endanger children and teenagers. This must change. 

Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence: A report on numbers and statistics 2022

May 23, 2022

Learn about the latest gun violence numbers and statistics, and legislative actions here in Ohio in the OCAGV report on numbers and statistics 2022.

Nine Strategies to Guide Efforts to Reduce Youth Gun Violence

April 22, 2022

Gun violence, including that perpetrated by young people, is a pernicious problem for many communities, particularly those facing historically high levels of concentrated disadvantage and disinvestment. To effectively address youth gun violence and establish and maintain peace, communities need stable safety infrastructures and effective interventions.We developed a research-based practice guide to help local governments, law enforcement agencies, and antiviolence organizations determine how to shape their approaches to reducing gun violence perpetrated by young people ages 10 to 25 in gangs or groups. Here, we summarize the guide's recommendations on how to develop effective interventions and build a broader safety infrastructure that supports the success of different partners working to protect young people and communities from gun violence.

Child Access Prevention Laws and Firearm Storage: Results From a National Survey

February 1, 2022

IntroductionChild Access Prevention Negligent Storage (CAP-NS) laws seek to reduce pediatric firearm injury by imposing sanctions on gun owners if children gain access to unlocked guns. Whether these laws affect the storage behavior they aim to encourage is not known because historical panel data on firearm storage do not exist. As a result, assessing how much, if at all, firearm storage changed because of CAP-NS laws requires an indirect approach.MethodsData for this study came from a web-based survey conducted by the research firm Ipsos from July 30, 2019 to August 11, 2019. Respondents were adult gun owners drawn from an online sampling frame comprising approximately 55,000 U.S. adults recruited using address-based sampling methods to be representative of the U.S. population. The primary outcome was the proportion of gun owners in CAP-NS versus non-CAP-NS states who had ≥1 unlocked firearm. Estimates are presented by CAP-NS status, for gun owners overall and for those who live with children, before and after adjusting for potential confounders. Data were analyzed in 2021.ResultsIn adjusted analyses, gun owners in CAP-NS states were no more likely to lock firearms than were those in states without these laws. In addition, most gun owners reported not knowing whether they lived in a state with a CAP-NS law.ConclusionsCAP-NS laws have at best modest effects on firearm storage. If the storage effect is as small as this study indicates, the mortality benefits previously attributed to CAP-NS laws are overstated. As such, developing interventions that effectively reduce firearm mortality by reducing access to firearms remains an urgent clinical and public policy priority.

A Research-Based Practice Guide to Reduce Youth Gun and Gang/Group Violence

January 3, 2022

While extensive research exists, the field lacks a current and translational synthesis of what works to reduce youth group and gun violence. In response, the Urban Institute developed a research-based practice guide to inform local government, law enforcement, and community-violence-intervention stakeholders as they implement new antiviolence interventions and refine existing ones. To inform the development of the guide, Urban researchers conducted a comprehensive literature synthesis of research on violence reduction interventions and conducted a scan of interventions representing well-known antiviolence models and other innovative strategies. Drawing on the findings from the literature synthesis and scan of practice, the practice guide presents recommendations around nine practice areas related to building an infrastructure to support a multi-faceted antiviolence strategy and implementing effective violence reduction programs.

Keeping Our Promise: Annual Report 2021

December 1, 2021

Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) was founded to protect all kids from shootings and violence in their schools, homes, and communities -- and this pandemic tested our organization and pushed us to find new ways to reach those in need. This 2021 Annual Report demonstrates SHP's impact, despite the seemingly endless challenges of the past year, we successfully saved lives and got kids the help they needed. And we will continue to do so every day until all children are free from shootings and acts of violence in their schools, homes, and communities.

Gun Violence and Mass Shootings

November 1, 2021

Table Talk: Family Conversations About Current Events for Parents, Families, and Caregivers.The issue of gun violence and mass shootings is in the news frequently. Young people are usually aware of what is happening and will want to talk about it. However, it is a sensitive, scary, and potentially painful topic. Before raising the matter with children, consider your child's personality. Will the conversation ease your child's fears or add to it?

How Can We Prevent Gun Violence in American Schools?

September 20, 2021

This fact sheet lays out research-backed approaches for creating safer schools and ending gun violence. School leaders and policymakers must cultivate school environments that foster openness and safety for all students. This includes supporting and implementing strong gun safety laws and school-based interventions that can work to intervene in problems before shootings happen.