Philadelphia Gun Violence: Data Shows Chronic Unemployment Related to Shooting


New research from the Philadelphia Department of Public Health highlights the role of long-term male unemployment in the city’s gun violence problem.

Postal codes with higher long-term male unemployment rates—people aged 16-64 who have been unemployed for more than a year—have higher numbers of shooting victims. At the same time, postal codes with lower long-term unemployment rates have fewer shooting victims.

Dr. Ruth AbayaLast week, the injury prevention program manager and emergency department physicians of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia presented the data at the biweekly gun violence briefing in the city.

more than 80% of Philadelphia’s postal codes It falls into one of two categories: high long-term unemployment and high levels of gun violence, or low long-term unemployment and low levels of gun violence.

Abaya told the Voice of Philadelphia: “There are very few places in this city where one is high and one is low.” “I think [that] It is the most convincing work that tells us that there is relevance. “

Gun violence unemploymentSource/Philadelphia Department of Public Health

The dark red and green zip codes mark the Philadelphia neighborhoods with the highest numbers of shooting victims and long-term male unemployment, respectively.

From 2015 to 2020, the postal codes with the highest long-term male unemployment rate (between 39-50%) had 273-920 shooting victims. These zip codes are mainly concentrated near the north and west of Philadelphia.

The postal codes with the lowest long-term male unemployment rate (between 1% and 8%) had fewer than 12 shooting victims in each region during the same period. These zip codes are mainly located in Center City and South Philadelphia.

However, there is no reason for gun violence.Other factors, including poverty, drug abuse and trauma, increase the chances of gun violence and make some people more vulnerable to harm and violence. US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC says that toxic stress can alter the brain development and chemical reactions of teenagers. This pressure may stem from living in poor communities, experiencing racism, and living in households with substance abuse, mental illness, and food insecurity.

CHOP’s research also shows that Bullying prevention, Gun safety with Intimate partner violence prevention Can reduce the risk of gun violence.

In 2020, Philadelphia experienced its worst gun violence in years. 499 homicides Report. It has not slackened.Have 295 homicides By Monday-an increase of 35% over the same period last year.

A kind Study at Temple University, A study published earlier this year found that COVID-19 restrictions have had a significant impact on gun violence in the city. The study stated that the pandemic has exacerbated poverty, unemployment, and structural racism, which are “empirically related to the violence in Philadelphia”.

Abaya said she and her researchers tracked long-term male unemployment because it showed a longer trend. Many people temporarily lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, experienced bereavement or changed careers, but this does not mean that unsustainable employment trends will be longer.

She said: “I think this person is fundamentally different from someone who couldn’t find a job for more than a year.”

Abaya said she hopes this research can be used to show stakeholders, anti-violence advocates and health care workers that long-term unemployment is a risk factor for gun violence. She said that creating jobs that can provide training and guidance as well as promotion capabilities will help end long-term unemployment.

“Sometimes what happens is that we talk about work-we need-but we just talk about work, as if it’s that simple,” Abaya said. “But I think what we need to realize is that putting someone in a vacancy doesn’t necessarily mean that it won’t cause them to be unemployed for a long time.”

Philadelphia’s fiscal year 2022 budget allocated nearly $5 million through the Department of Commerce for workforce development. WHYY reportIt also allocated US$2.4 million for the transitional employment program.



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