Washington (February 2, 2015) – Senator Edward Markey (D-Mass.) and Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) today praised President Obama for including $10 million for gun violence research in the Department of Health and Human Services Fiscal Year 2016 budget request. Last week, Senator Markey and Rep. Maloney and a group of Senate and House Democrats called on the President to request the funding. There have been nearly 100 school shootings in the two years since the Sandy Hook Elementary tragedy. On average, there are 32,000 deaths and 76,00 injuries occurring from gun violence each year in the United States.
“This investment is the type of gun violence prevention that everyone – regardless of political party or affiliation – should want to support,” said Senator Markey. “To solve a problem as deadly as gun violence we have to study it. And if we want to prevent injury and deaths from guns, we need to know what can be done to prevent them. No one should oppose more non-partisan, scientific research of gun violence. Not Democrats, not Republicans, and not the NRA. I applaud President Obama’s commitment to this public health investment, which will help us make progress towards safer streets and neighborhoods.”
“The NRA is fighting against sensible gun violence research because they’re afraid of learning the truth,” said Rep. Maloney. “Gun violence is a public health crisis that needlessly claims the lives of more Americans every year than the entire Vietnam War. More children die from gunshot wounds than cancer, but we aren’t doing anything about it. I strongly support and applaud President Obama’s continued commitment to the sensible study of gun violence, and will continue working with Senator Markey to achieve its inclusion in our final budget.”
Last year, Rep. Maloney and Senator Markey authored and introduced a bill to fund firearm safety and public health research (H.R. 4707, S. 2373) which would allow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to conduct scientific research into firearm safety.
Due to a ban on federal funding for gun violence research that almost halted entirely gun violence research, policymakers, health care practitioners, researchers, and others lack comprehensive, scientific information about the causes and characteristics of gun violence, or the best strategies to prevent future tragedies. The President lifted the 17-year ban in 2013.
The $10 million in funding is noted on page 4 of the CDC FY 2016 Congressional Justification document, which can be found HERE.