Gun Violence Has Huge Impact On Hispanics


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The homicide victimization rate for Hispanics is more than twice as high as the murder rate for whites, according to a new study on Hispanic victims of lethal firearms violence in the United States.
The study, released by the Violence Policy Center, also shows that homicide is the second leading cause of death for Hispanics ages 15 to 24. In addition, the study found more than two-thirds of Hispanic murder victims are killed with guns.
Hispanic Victims of Lethal Firearms Violence in the United States is a comprehensive study on gun violence against Hispanics in America. It is based on data from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as unpublished information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Supplementary Homicide Report.

In total, the study found more than 38,000 Hispanics were killed by guns between 1999 and 2010, including 26,349 homicide victims killed with guns and 10,314 gun suicides. The report also found that Hispanic victims are more likely to be killed by a stranger than the national average.

Importantly, the actual number of Hispanic victims is almost certainly higher than the number reported in the study, due to major shortcomings in the way public agencies collect information on Hispanic ethnicity. The study recommends that government agencies improve the way they collect and report data on Hispanic victims of lethal violence.
“Our report shows that America’s gun violence epidemic has a disproportionate impact on the Hispanic community,” states VPC Executive Director Josh Sugarmann. “This epidemic of violence is destroying lives and tearing families apart. Preventing gun violence should be an urgent priority for all public officials from community leaders to members of Congress.”

These are the main facts of the study:

  • In 2010, the most recent year for which comprehensive CDC data is available, the homicide victimization rate for Hispanics in the United States was 5.73 per 100,000. In comparison, the homicide victimization rate for whites was 2.52 per 100,000.
  • Homicide is the second-leading cause of death for Hispanics ages 15 to 24. For whites in that age group, homicide is the fourth-leading cause of death, and for blacks it is the leading cause of death.

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