|Posted:||January 6, 2021 10:22 AM|
|From:||Senator Vincent J. Hughes|
|To:||All Senate members|
|Subject:||Pennsylvania Center for Gun Violence Research|
|In the near future I plan on reintroducing Senate Bill 867 from last session which creates a Pennsylvania Center for Gun Violence Research.
Gun violence is a public health crisis. The rates of fatal gun violence have remained largely unchanged for more than a decade. During the last decade, Pennsylvania had 12,941 gun related deaths, which ranked fourth in the nation. During that same decade, the Commonwealth had one of the highest rates from firearm homicides among children and teens in the nation.
Over the last year we have seen increased tragic events involving firearms. In Pittsburgh, a gunman killed 11 individuals at a synagogue. Most recently, in Philadelphia, six police officers were injured during an hours long stand off with police trying to serve a warrant. While these tragic events get national attention, the daily firearm related injuries and deaths that occur on our streets often do not.
In addition to commonsense firearm laws, we must collect data that will help identify the root causes of gun violence that can be used to identify best practices to reduce or prevent firearm related violence.
Under our legislation, a research center for gun violence will be established in the Commonwealth. The Center for Gun Violence’s mission will be to conduct independent academic research on gun violence and provide policymakers with scientific evidence to develop sound, nonpartisan gun violence prevention policies and programs. The research center will be housed at a university located in the Commonwealth. The university that will host the research center will be selected by a review committee after a solicitation for request for proposals.
It is beyond time we take steps to identify the root causes of violence stemming from firearms in all our communities.
Please join me in cosponsoring this legislation.
Introduced as SB238