Gun Violence

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AJPH has published some of the finest cutting-edge research on firearm safety and violence and we're proud to offer these insights

Share our fact sheet about gun violence and prevention.

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Gun violence is a leading cause of premature death in the U.S. Guns kill more than 38,000 people and cause nearly 85,000 injuries each year. As a longtime advocate for violence prevention policies, APHA recognizes a comprehensive public health approach to addressing this growing crisis is necessary.

The issue of gun violence is complex and deeply rooted in our culture, which is why we must take a public health approach to ensuring our families and communities are safe. We must place a renewed emphasis on improving gun injury and violence research. Ongoing work is needed to ensure firearms do not fall into the wrong hands and to expand access to mental health services to those who need it most.

If you are interested in a sample op-ed, letter to the editor or technical support to help reach your local media, please contact APHA Media Relations.

In advance of the March 24 "March for Our Lives" rally in Washington, D.C., animator Alex Clark uses a bit of humor to explain gun violence prevention:


And APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin, MD, talks about why Congress needs to enable the CDC to research gun violence as a public health issue:



Letters from 75 public health, medical and research organization to the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives urging action on comprehensive legislative solutions to firearm-related injuries and fatalities (PDF)

APHA mourns Las Vegas gun violence tragedy

Fact sheet: Who Gets Killed in America? The National Violent Death Reporting System is Keeping Track (PDF)

Troisi, Williams: Public health approach can stem gun violence (PDF, Houston Chronicle)

Public health taking stronger approach to gun violence: APHA, Brady team up on prevention 

"Gun Violence is an epidemic. It is time for a public health response" (editorial in The Guardian by APHA's Georges Benjamin)

Chicago Tribune  previews gun violence prevention as key issue at APHA Annual Meeting in Chicago

More police die in states with higher gun ownership, AJPH  study finds

Public health joining with new partners to fight gun violence

Diagnosis: gun deaths and injuries are a public health issue (editorial by APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin, MD, and Brady Campaign and Center to Prevent Gun Violence President Dan Gross)

The rate of gun-related murders fell sharply in the 10 years after Connecticut implemented a law requiring people buying firearms to have a license, according to a study (CNN article based on American Journal of Public Health study findings)

Community preparedness resources for active shooter incidents (NACCHO)

AJPH Gun Violence Articles

Gun violence topics page (a collection of open access AJPH  research related to gun violence)

Academic Public Health and the Firearm Crisis: An Agenda for Action

Association between Connecticut Permit-to-Permit Handgun Law and Homicide

The Association between State Laws Regulating Handgun Ownership and Statewide Suicide Rates

Primary Care, Behavioral Health, and Public Health: Partners in Reducing Mental Health Stigma

Suicide, Guns, and Public Policy

The Relationship Between Gun Ownership and Firearm Homicide Rates in the United States, 1981–2010.

Mental Illness Stigma, Help Seeking, and Public Health Programs.

The Role of Pain, Functioning, and Mental Health Suicidality Among Veterans Affairs Primary Care Patients

To Flourish or Not: Positive Mental Health and All-Cause Mortality

Suicide Risk and Precipitating Circumstances Among Young, Middle-Aged, and Older Male Veterans.

Availability of Litigation as a Public Health Tool for Firearm Injury Prevention: Comparison of Guns, Vaccines, and Motor Vehicles

Investigating the Link Between Gun Possession and Gun Assault

 Mental Health Promotion as a New Goal in Public Mental Health Care: A Randomized Controlled Trial of an Intervention Enhancing Psychological Flexibility

Mental Health Promotion in a Reformed Health Care System

Reduced Mortality Among Department of Veterans Affairs Patients With Schizophrenia or Bipolar Disorder Lost to Follow-Up and Engaged in Active Outreach to Return for Care.

Prevalence of Perceived Stress and Mental Health Indicators Among Reserve-Component and Active-Duty Military Personnel

Patterns of Treatment Utilization Before Suicide Among Male Veterans With Substance Use Disorders

Lessons Learned From Mental Health Enhancement and Suicide Prevention Activities in the Veterans Health Administration

APHA Policy Statements
Useful Links & Resources, White House and Executive Agencies
Violence Prevention Advocacy Organizations

David Hemenway

Private Guns, Public Health

While We Were Sleeping: Success Stories in Injury and Violence Prevention

Johns Hopkins University Press

Reducing Gun Violence in America: Informing Policy with Evidence and Analysis (edited by Daniel W. Webster and Jon S. Vernick)

National Academies Press

Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review (Authors: Charles F. Wellford, John V. Pepper, and Carol V. Petrie)

Public Health Newswire
Fact Sheets, Letters, Testimony and APHA News Releases

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