The United States continues to face rising rates of firearm violence at a time when overall crime rates are declining. Among the types of firearm violence that are increasing in frequency are public mass shootings. These events have widespread impacts, affecting not only those individuals who lose loved ones or who are present at the scene of the attack, but also members of the communities in which they occur. Such impacts include, but are not limited to, trauma-related psychological distress, emotional or physical responses, and financial impacts. To date, however, understanding the breadth of these impacts has been largely overlooked by the scholarly community, which can have important implications for policymakers and practitioners tasked with supporting survivors and communities after one of these tragedies occurs.
This research project, led by Dr. Jaclyn Schildkraut, Executive Director of the Regional Gun Violence Research Consortium at the Rockefeller Institute of Government and a national expert on mass shootings, represents the first large scale assessment of survivors of public mass shootings. The main goals of this project are to (1) identify the needs of survivors after a mass shooting in both the immediate, intermediate, and long-term, and (2) provide recommendations for vested stakeholders (e.g., governments, agencies, support providers) about how best to provide support in ways that meet the needs of the survivors.
To accomplish these goals, this project seeks to survey an estimated 1,500 survivors of public mass shootings from impacted communities across the United States. The survey responses, which will be collected anonymously, will be analyzed to identify what supports individuals have found to be helpful and unhelpful/harmful, tools and resources that enabled them to successfully access certain supports, and barriers that prohibited access to others that may have been needed. Consideration would be given to how experiences with these supports may vary across the different phases of the disaster, as well as based on how the individual was impacted or exposed to the mass shooting. More information about the project, including additional details on the methodology, can be found here.
If you are interested in participating in this project, please complete our contact form to be mailed a link to the anonymous survey. You can also use this form to direct any questions to Dr. Schildkraut about this project.
If you are also willing to help us share the word about this project to mass shooting survivors in your network, please consider downloading and sharing our call for participants (to the left).
This page will be updated with project results as they become available.