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Violence and suicide prevention

Psychologists receive grants to conduct research on gun violence

The CDC and NIH announce awards for firearm injury and mortality prevention research.

Cite this
Fisher, C. (2020, November 2). Psychologists receive grants to conduct research on gun violence.

A gun-free zone sign

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announce awards for research on gun violence prevention.

After 20 years without dedicated funding for gun violence prevention research, in Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 Congress provided $25 million, evenly split between the CDC and NIH, to conduct research on “firearm morbidity and mortality prevention.” Recently, CDC and NIH announced they are now awarding grants to conduct this research. At the CDC, current awardees, supported by the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, include psychologists L. Rowell Huesmann of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, Andrew Morral of the RAND Corporation, David Schwebel of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Linda Teplin of Northwestern University, and Anna Yaros of RTI International. At NIH, current awardees include Craig Bryan of The Ohio State University (supported by the National Institute of Mental Health) and Benjamin Chapman of the University of Rochester (supported by the National Institute on Aging).

Gun violence continues to inflict an enormous and tragic human toll in the United States, most notably through loss of life, almost 40,000 deaths in 2018, and many more who suffer nonfatal firearm injuries. Most gun fatalities in the United States are deaths by suicide; guns are used in just over half of these deaths. Gun violence also takes many different forms including intimate partner violence, violent criminal activity, violent acts during periods of intense emotional distress, and acts committed while under the influence of alcohol or drugs or experiencing symptoms of psychosis.

APA has long advocated for dedicated federal funding for gun violence prevention research, both on its own and with other scientific societies and coalition partners. APA continues its advocacy for maintaining these research funds, including most recently, urging Congress to provide $50 million in funding for FY 2021 to be shared between the CDC and NIH.

For more information, contact Craig Fisher or Ben Vonachen.

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