Washington (December 17, 2019) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12), co-authors of the Gun Violence Prevention Research Act, released the following statement applauding the inclusion of $25 million for gun violence research in the Fiscal Year 2020 spending package that passed the House of Representatives today. The Senate will vote on final passage in the coming days. In November, Senator Markey led 23 of his Senate colleagues in calling on leaders of the Appropriations Committee to include $50 million in funding for gun violence prevention research at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In the letter, the Senators point to the string of mass shootings that have occurred since they last wrote to urge funding for this vital research.
This would be the first time Congress approve federal funding for the study of gun violence since an appropriations rider called the Dickey Amendment was put on the books in 1996.
“Gun violence is a public health epidemic, and it should be studied just like any other health crisis – by our government’s top researchers,” said Rep. Maloney and Sen. Markey. “While our bill would have provided $50 million for this research, this $25 million is an important first step. Studying gun violence is key is helping us to address an epidemic that takes 100 lives a day. We need to do everything we can to address preventable gun violence.”
In 2018, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar testified that the Dickey Amendment does not prevent the CDC from conducting research into gun violence prevention. Report language accompanying the Fiscal Year 2018 omnibus appropriations legislation similarly made this clarification.
Gun safety groups and health organizations endorsing the Gun Violence Prevention Act include: Brady Campaign, Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Sandy Hook Promise, March For Our Lives, Giffords: Courage to Fight Gun Violence, NoRA, Stop Handgun Violence, Arizonans for Gun Safety, Survivors Lead, Child Firearm Safety Alliance, Safe Tennessee Project, North Carolinians Against Gun Violence Education Fund, Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence, CeaseFire Pennsylvania, WAVE Educational Fund, Gun Violence Prevention Center of Utah, Ceasefire Oregon, Rhode Island Coalition Against Gun Violence, Michigan Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence, Georgians for Gun Safety, New Mexicans to Prevent Gun Violence, Iowans for Gun Safety, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Public Health Association, Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Academy of Family Physicians, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, AASA, the School Superintendents Association, and Futures Without Violence.