Letters to Congress and the Administration

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ASTHO Signs National Violence Prevention Network Letter to Vice President Biden

Jan. 11, 2013

As a member of the National Violence Prevention Network, ASTHO, along with 23 other organizations, signed on to a letter to Vice President Biden and the White House Gun Violence Commission. The letter urges a $10 million increase in FY 2014 to the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS). Overall, congressional funding for NVDRS falls well short of the estimated $25 million annual investment needed to implement and maintain NVDRS in all 50 states, plus DC and U.S. Territories. Operational in 18 states, the NVDRS is a state-based surveillance system that pools anonymous data from public health, law enforcement, medical examiners and social service agencies to track the modes and circumstances surrounding violent deaths. Two-thirds of the country continues to lack NVDRS funding, leaving many states without vital data to reinforce violence prevention policies. Lastly, the letter emphasizes attention to those who perpetrate violence as a result of mental illness, suggesting that NVDRS data may yield important information on how and when these individuals intersect with the health care system. You can read the letter in its entirety here.