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Weekly Brief on Gun Violence Prevention in Philadelphia

Weekly Brief on Gun Violence Prevention in Philadelphia
Each week we share news from our Center plus updates on gun violence and prevention in Philadelphia from our partners at Billy Penn.

Credible Messenger Film Festival concludes
Above: Images from Sunday's opening session.
Above: Images from Sunday's opening session.
We are still strengthening connections with everyone who attended and already discussing another Credible Messenger Film Festival after screening the first six short documentaries produced with our support during events this week. For complete information and more photos, visit: The Credible Messenger Film Festival, 2022
Our team and panelists from the closing session last night included, from left: P.O.C., B. McFly, Kimberly Kamara, Oronde McClain, Maxayn Gooden, Alisha Laws and Aapril Rice.
Our team and panelists from the closing session last night included, from left: P.O.C., B. McFly, Kimberly Kamara, Oronde McClain, Maxayn Gooden, Alisha Laws and Aapril Rice.
Coming up next: The Better Gun Violence Reporting Workshop
Philadelphia’s gun violence crisis is impacting all of us. What if news reporting could be part of the solution?
We are convening a workshop next month with local TV news journalists, experts from impacted communities, researchers, educators and other thought leaders on how we can lead the way together and make this idea a reality in Philadelphia. Space is limited but for more info, please: Send us a Message. [PCGVR]
Updates from Billy Penn
By the numbers in Philadelphia
  • 56: Shooting victims recorded last week so far, vs. 53 the week prior. [City Controller via @PCGVR]
  • 1,595: Shooting victims this year, up 3% from last year [PCGVR]
  • 362: Year-to-date homicides, 2% ahead of last year’s pace and up 76% vs. five years ago [Philly Police]
Test Drive
“I had to provide references, but nobody contacted them. Easy peasy.” - Journalist Victor Fiorillo, on getting a concealed carry permit in Philadelphia. []
Under scrutiny
Philly artists and advocates weigh the impact of drill music — minus the violence
City budget
Most of Philly’s gun violence funding doesn’t immediately address the crisis, analysis shows
Back to school
‘Kahlief loved hard’: A Philadelphia student’s killing resonates as the new school year begins
New research
Association Between Geospatial Access to Care and Firearm Injury Mortality in Philadelphia
On the record
“It’s the smell of pooling blood and the stench of charred flesh that stays with health care workers as they walk from one trauma patient to the next.” - Einstein emergency Dr. Merle Carter [Pennsylvania Capital-Star]
City Hall exhibit reminds us that we are all co-victims of gun violence
Harrisburg report
“Violence is a solvable problem, and its continued escalation is in many ways a policy and political choice.” - Josh Fleitman of CeaseFire PA []
Harrisburg Republicans have fiddled this summer while our communities suffer
On the media
What the narratives around gun violence in D.C. get wrong
Solution(s) of the Week
It’s Not Just Mental Health. Addressing ‘Social Determinants of Safety’ Can Prevent Gun Violence
San Antonio trauma surgeon points to possible solutions to end gun violenc
Banning weapons of war is the logical fix for gun violence
In memoriam
Byron Dessiso, 36: 'He'd always find a way out of nowhere"
• This newsletter has been produced thanks to funding awarded through the Directors Grant Program of the Barra Foundation.
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The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting

Better gun violence reporting could enhance public understanding and support for effective programs and policies to prevent shootings and hopefully save lives. But what does the most ethical, impactful and empathetic reporting look like?

The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting was launched to explore the hypotheses that changing the practice of news reporting can prevent gun violence. Since then, our research has refined this focus by identifying harmful reporting practices, asking what best practices would look like and how they could be implemented. Now, we have organized our work into three closely-aligned programs:


Our community reporting project trains, compensates and empowers people impacted by gun violence in Philadelphia to produce and distribute news reports on its root causes, their lived experience and possible solutions from the community perspective, with guidance from professional journalists.


Our interdisciplinary research collaborative is exploring the intersection of gun violence, impacted communities and the media. Our Director of Research Dr. Jessica H. Beard is a trauma surgeon who cares for gunshot patients at Temple University Hospital and researches public health at Temple’s Lewis Katz School of Medicine. Her work is supported by a three-year Stoneleigh Foundation Fellowship.


Our professional development program strives to help journalists covering gun violence find a more diverse selection of experts, the most reliable data, evidence-based solutions, inspiring past reporting, strategies for community engagement, professional networking opportunities and additional resources. Representatives from every major Philadelphia news organization have participated.


We strive to model ourselves after other organizations that have dramatically advanced the practice of journalism. Within five years, we hope to support a small staff with a long runway for continuing operations and a strategic plan for sustainability.

Until then, we plan to continue supporting voices from the community, publishing research that informs best practices and building networks of journalists who believe we can all do better, make a difference and stop the violence.

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