The Joyce Foundation continues in its attempt to take away the American right to bear arms by funding "research" that reaches conclusions to support its gun control agenda, as well propaganda efforts with the Mayors Against Guns and police chief organizations, assist Washington DC city government in its continued fight against Heller, and advocate for gun control efforts on the west coast.


Gun Violence
In the early 1990s, gun violence reached unprecedented levels. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 1994 the number of Americans killed by firearms peaked with 39,595 deaths. Another 104,390 people suffered non-fatal injuries. While the annual number of gun-related deaths has decreased to approximately 30,000, the loss of life remains a chilling reality across the United States.

To help curb the devastation, Joyce launched a program in 1992 aimed at preventing gun violence through improved public policies. Since that time, a cornerstone of the Gun Violence program’s grant making has been funding for research to inform the policy of gun violence prevention.

Historically, public debate concerning firearms framed the issue as one of criminal justice—using stiff penalties and rigid laws to help stop gun violence. Joyce forged a different path and approached the issue from a public health perspective, with a focus on violence prevention. The Foundation has worked to expand the body of knowledge on gun violence prevention by funding critical analysis of the issue.

For example, Joyce supported a series of studies conducted by Harvard Injury Control Research Center at the Harvard University School of Public Health, which examined the relationship between access to firearms and the risk of firearm violence. Research indicated states with a higher level of gun ownership also had a higher level of gun homicide and suicide. The correlation between gun availability and state homicide rates applied to men and women across all age groups.

In addition to studying firearm homicides, Joyce supported further investigation into suicide, a leading cause of death among Americans 40 years old or younger. Harvard researchers conducted case-control studies that indicated a strong link between a gun in the home and an increased risk of suicide. The data also revealed that easy access to a firearm in the home not only heightened the suicide risk for the gun owner, but for the owner’s spouse and children as well.

Beyond the emotional toll gun violence takes on individuals, families, and communities, Joyce sought to examine the economic stress of gun deaths and injuries. Researchers from Duke University and Georgetown University published Gun Violence: The Real Costs (2000), which calculated that gun violence costs Americans approximately $100 billion each year. In addition to surveying direct expenses, such as emergency medical aid and loss of job productivity, the research team also employed extensive survey data to measure the subjective costs of living in a society where there is risk of being shot or losing a loved one to gunfire.

Additional research supported by Joyce helped build a body of evidence on effective law enforcement strategies to reduce gun violence. Research conducted by the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research discovered that undercover stings, lawsuits, and in some cases, prosecution of licensed gun dealers, led to significant reductions in the flow of new guns to criminals in Chicago and Detroit. In West Milwaukee, a crackdown on one single gun dealer led to a 44 percent reduction in the flow of guns into the illegal market citywide. In addition, studies by University of California-Davis have highlighted the particular role gun shows play as a venue for illegal trafficking.

“For too long, policies surrounding firearms have been developed based on assumptions, not facts,” said Stephen Teret, professor of health and public policy at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. “The expansion of public health research will help policy makers make informed decisions about preventing gun violence.”

Since the Gun Violence program’s inception in 1992, Joyce-supported research has played a central role in most of the major gun violence prevention policy debates across the country. For example, research on the risk posed by firearms, and on the cost of firearm violence, was considered by the Supreme Court in two pivotal cases addressing the scope of permissible gun regulation under the Second Amendment. Advocates and attorneys cited this work in briefs submitted in Heller v. District of Columbia (2008) and McDonald v. City of Chicago (2010). It is anticipated that the research will continue to inform policy makers as states and municipalities work to address local gun violence and implement public safety measures that comply with the Supreme Court’s decisions.

Joyce-supported research has also been referenced in recent efforts to crack down on illegal gun trafficking. For example, using data on gun shows and other private sellers, Joyce grantees in Illinois and Wisconsin are currently working to control secondary market abuses by requiring all firearm transfers to go through licensed dealers. The studies also have been used to support a proposed federal policy to regulate private sales at gun shows, and also to demand stricter oversight of licensed dealers selling firearms at gun shows. Likewise, research by Johns Hopkins School of Public Health is informing the work of law enforcement in targeting corrupt gun dealers who supply the illegal market.

Improving access to data and research on gun violence has also been a priority for Joyce. The Foundation continues to support efforts to expand the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS). As part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NVDRS collects violent death data from a variety of law enforcement and medical sources in order to develop a comprehensive portrait of homicide and suicide. NVDRS now collects data from 18 states with the goal of nationwide expansion so that this critical information will be available to develop violence prevention policies across the country.

To increase access to information, the Harvard Injury Control Research Center recently unveiled a new tool for those who study, review, or develop gun policies. The Firearms Research Digest is a public, online clearinghouse of academic research on firearms violence for use by law enforcement, public health officials, policy makers, news media, and others concerned with issues of gun violence.

“There is a wealth of data for use in the policy arena,” said David Hemenway, PhD, of the Harvard School of Public Health. “Already the studies we have collected can help those concerned with gun violence find new and smart approaches grounded in research and science.”

Gun Violence Grants 2009: $3,223,438

Gun Violence, Illegal Gun InitiativeGun Violence
American College of Preventive Medicine
Washington, DC $203,193
To support education and advocacy around the continuation and expansion of the National Violent Death Reporting System. (1 yr.)

Freedom States Alliance
Chicago, IL $25,000
To support its transition following a merger with States United to Prevent Gun Violence and its continued efforts on behalf of state gun violence prevention groups. (6 mos.)

International Association of Chiefs of Police
Alexandria, VA $250,000
To continue implementation efforts around the recommendations contained in the report of the Great Lakes States Summit on Gun Violence. (1 yr.)

Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health
Baltimore, MD $179,971
For support of research on policies that can more effectively restrict firearm ownership to law-abiding persons. (2 yrs.)

Legal Community Against Violence
San Francisco, CA $340,000
For core support to Legal Community Against Violence to provide legal and technical assistance in support of state and local gun violence prevention policy reform efforts. (20 mos.)

University of California, Davis
Sacramento, CA $175,000
For core support of the Violence Prevention Research Program’s work on research and policy development focused on firearm violence and its prevention. (2 yrs.)

The University of Chicago
Chicago, IL $100,000
To support the University of Chicago Crime Lab’s work carrying out randomized experiments to generate new information about how best to reduce youth gun violence in Chicago. (1 yr.)

University of Washington
Seattle, WA $15,000
To support the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center’s production of an educational video that highlights the problems that arise from the easy availability of firearms in communities across Washington. (1 yr.)

Illegal Gun Initiative
Ceasefire Pennsylvania Education Fund
Philadelphia, PA $25,000
To support a pilot project to deploy four field organizers to build local citizen coalitions in underrepresented areas of the state. (4 mos.)

The Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence
Washington, DC $85,274
To support its work at the state and federal levels to close secondary gun markets and to work with the District of Columbia on a constitutionally permissible gun law following the Heller decision. (6 mos.)

Freedom States Alliance
Chicago, IL $115,000
To support its transition following a merger with States United to Prevent Gun Violence and its continued efforts on behalf of state gun violence prevention groups. (6 mos.)

Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence
Chicago, IL $350,000
For continued support of its public, media, and policy-maker education efforts to promote firearm policy reform in Illinois, and to integrate the activities of the Illinois Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence into the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence programs. (1 yr.)

Legal Community Against Violence
San Francisco, CA $100,000
To continue its work tracking state legislation and responding to requests for technical assistance and policy analysis from mayors, state legislators, county executives, and state gun violence prevention groups. (1 yr.)

United Against Illegal Guns Support Fund
New York, NY $500,000
To support the work of Mayors Against Illegal Guns to educate the public and policy makers about the problems of illegal guns and gun trafficking, and for the City Coordinators program of the Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition. (1 yr.)

United Against Illegal Guns Support Fund
New York, NY $175,000
For expansion of the Mayors Against Illegal Guns City Coordinators program. (2 yrs.)