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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: December 9, 2022 09:35 AM
From: Representative Danielle Friel Otten
To: All House members
Subject: Pennsylvania Gun Incident Reporting System
Gun violence is a significant and growing public health issue that has been disregarded and ignored for far too long. I believe that we can save the lives of adults and children in Pennsylvania by taking a scientific approach to reducing firearm injuries and fatalities and using data to inform our legislative solutions.

In 2020, firearms displaced auto accidents as the leading cause of death in children ages one through 18 in the United States. State transportation agencies and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration have reduced motor-vehicle deaths by taking a scientific, data-driven approach to both vehicle safety and driver education. PennDOT collects comprehensive car accident and crash data from police agencies through their Crash Reporting System and makes the data publicly available. Yet not nearly as much information is collected or made publicly available about gun incidents that result in injury or death.
To reduce firearm injuries and fatalities, particularly in children, we need to look upstream and address the root causes and exacerbating factors. For this reason, I propose that we require the same kind of diligent data collection and reporting system for gun-related incidents in Pennsylvania that we do for automobile accidents and begin to treat and respond to this issue as the public health crisis that it is.
My legislation will require that we collect and publicly report specific, standardized details around each gun-related incident, including accidents and self-harming incidents, so that we can recommend smart, data-driven legislative solutions that most effectively address the problem. 
General areas to be considered under this proposal include, but are not limited to:
  • Information on who is involved in shootings (both shooters and victims)
  • Information on when and where gun violence takes place
  • Information on environmental factors affecting both shooters and victims, including trauma-informed factors and social determinants of health, such as access and proximity to good schools, healthcare, mental health care, and job training
  • Detailed data on incidents by gun type
  • Information about the immediate and secondary effects of gun violence on others 
I hope you will join me in support of this important legislation.