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How to Support Survivors and People Impacted by Gun Violence

People impacted by gun violence can experience ongoing trauma, including a high risk of suicide. These resources identify ways to support those in need.

Especially during social distancing and self-isolation, it is essential that we share lifesaving mental health tools and resources

When someone experiences gun violence — whether in a mass shooting, suicide by gun, domestic violence, unintentional shooting, or another form of gun violence — the mental health effects are long-term and devastating. For months and years after, survivors, families, friends, and affected communities can face a range of harmful psychological effects, including PTSD, substance misuse, self-harm, major depressive disorders, and panic attacks, among others.

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call or text 988 or visit 988lifeline.org to reach the free and confidential 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.

In order to stem trauma, it is crucial that we provide emotional support to people and communities affected by gun violence. That includes immediate survivors, those living or working in impacted areas, the loved ones of victims, school professionals, first responders, and recovery workers.

Remember to check in, check up, and check often

Our resource, made in collaboration with the American Association of Suicidology (AAS), the Disaster Distress Helpline, and youth community activists, details how communities can support those impacted by gun violence. The resource identifies common emotional and physical reactions to the trauma associated with gun violence and provides tools to support those in need.

Additional reading:

  • The Truth About Gun Violence and Suicide (2018 Brady report)
  • The Mental Health Impacts of Mass Shootings (2019 Brady Report)
  • More Suicide Prevention Resources

    Every day, 63 people die by suicide with a gun, and firearm suicides have gone up nearly every year since 2006. These are preventable tragedies. But we must all act to prevent them. For more tips and tools, check out these extensive resources compiled by Team ENOUGH, our youth-led program.

    Mental Health Resources on Coping Amid COVID-19

    COVID-19 has particularly isolating effects for people who already lack mental health resources, including veterans, people of color, and LGBTQ communities.

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