September 29, 2021
- Reduce stigma of mental illness.
APA strongly discourages the use of inaccurate and harmful rhetoric that blames America’s gun violence problem solely on mental illness. The overwhelming majority of people with mental illness are not violent. Based on the research, a history of violence is the single best predictor of who will commit future violence.
- Gun violence prevention research
APA Services advocates for dedicated federal funding for gun violence prevention research at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to promote a science-based public health approach to addressing this critical societal issue.
- Safe firearms storage
APA supports efforts to fund lethal means safety options including safe firearms storage. Safe storage is crucial to preventing unintentional injuries and self-harm. Lethal means safety training is necessary to educate firearms owners and health care providers.
- Extreme Risk Protection Order Laws
APA urges support of state efforts to implement Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPOs) laws. These laws can prevent suicides and can provide communities with an opportunity to petition the courts to intervene, and temporarily remove a firearm if the person is a possible risk to themselves or others without legal repercussions.
- Community and school-based gun violence prevention initiatives
APA encourages public investment in evidence based programs and policies that work with schools and community stakeholders to reduce access to firearms by youth and individuals who are at risk of harming themselves or others. These initiatives provide crucial interventions to prevent tragedies and save lives.
Our efforts on this issue advance the following advocacy priorities:
- Criminal justice
- Violence and suicide prevention
Gun violence is a public health crisis in America, and guns are associated with far too many deaths in our country, including 50%-60% of suicides.
What you can do
Recent advocacy on gun violence prevention
Legislation includes a new focus on addressing trauma related to exposure to community violence.
August 26, 2021
Association endorsement quoted in key lawmaker’s press release introducing the bill.
April 28, 2021
APA calls on Congress to fund state gun violence prevention laws.