South San Francisco, CA August 9, 2023 Submitted by Karl Sonkin, Kaiser Permanente (Press Release by Ally Barron Hope and Heal Fund)
Groundbreaking Maps Dispel Former Misconception About Gun Homicides in California
The maps show that while urban centers are often characterized as the leading settings of gun violence, this data shows that two-thirds of gun homicides occurred outside urban settings and California’s most populated cities.
California – Hope and Heal Fund in partnership with RomoGIS Enterprise today launched a groundbreaking statewide Geographical Information System (GIS) maps of gun homicides from 2014-2022. The California Gun Homicides 2014 – 2022 dashboard was collaboratively built to visualize available data of reported gun homicides and raise awareness about where gun-related homicides have occurred in California communities.
For the first time, Californians can view where gun violence happens in communities, filtered by county and showing street-level incidents. The maps reveal a compelling insight into the patterns of gun homicides in California. The maps show that approximately two-thirds of gun homicides over the past nine years occurred outside urban settings and California’s most populated cities. This finding underscores the urgent need to extend support beyond urban centers and address the rising rates of gun violence in rural, semi-rural, and suburban areas.
This research was made possible by grant funding from long-time gun violence prevention supporter Kaiser Permanente. With this support Hope and Heal Fund has also built a Northern California network of community leaders focused on gun violence data collection and mapping and to better understand when and where California gun-related deaths occur.
Cuco Rodriguez, Hope and Heal Fund’s Chief Strategist and Equity Officer led this initiative, sharing “One important finding from the data is the need to separate and examine different types of gun homicides, particularly those related to intimate partner violence. Currently, general homicide data from law enforcement agencies often overlook the impact and frequency of intimate partner homicides, leading to misconceptions about the primary drivers of gun violence.”
Through further mapping and by analyzing disaggregated homicide data, we can better understand the unique challenges posed by intimate partner homicides and allocate appropriate resources to address this specific issue.
This effort initially set out to counter inaccurate assumptions regarding urban centers being drivers of gun homicides in California. With access to timely data, stakeholders should consider the implications of this information and data and how it can best be leveraged to develop opportunities that are strategic, focused, and surgical in reducing all forms of gun violence across the state.
“As a health care organization that is committed to improving health in our communities and addressing health equity, we are proud to support the work of the Hope and Heal fund to raise awareness and reduce gun-related homicides in California,” said Yvette Radford, Kaiser Permanente Northern California vice president for External and Community Affairs. “Far too often our clinical teams see the devastating effects of gun violence on individuals and families. Together with all health care organizations, we must do more to support evidence-based community interventions that prevent gun violence.”
To explore the GIS maps and gain insights into gun violence data, please visit our CA Gun Homicides GIS Mapping Report.
About Hope and Heal Fund:
Hope and Heal Fund is the only state-based donor collaborative fund investing in a public health, racial equity, and community-based approach to decreasing firearm suicides and gun homicides, injuries, and trauma. Hope and Heal Fund partners with impacted communities on strategies to prevent and interrupt gun violence and heal from the trauma, harm, and generational iniquities exacerbated by the lethality and coercive effects of guns in homes and communities.
About RomoGIS Enterprises:
RomoGIS Enterprises specializes in geospatial solutions, specifically GIS mapping and analysis. With its expertise in data visualization and interactive tools, RomoGIS empowers organizations to gain valuable insights and make informed decisions.