WASHINGTON, D.C. (CBS46) -- "Mister Speaker, I rise today to urge action to end the public health crisis of gun violence," were the first words Lucy McBath spoke on the House Floor, where she appeared Wednesday.
McBath, who represents Georgia's 6th District, spoke in support of a $50 million gun violence research project to be run through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other agencies.
She went on to say:
"Every day, nearly 100 people are killed in suicides, homicides, and accidents involving guns. But we have not invested nearly enough in preventing these deaths. Of the top 30 causes of death, twenty-nine receive more research funding than guns. But today, this body will vote to invest in gun violence research at the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institutes of Health.
I recently visited the Centers for Disease Control Injury Center, which is in my district. With this critical funding, they will learn how we can prevent gun tragedies. This investment is long overdue, and I was proud to lead my colleagues in asking for this funding.
We have the responsibility to pursue life-saving research, and today we vote to end gun violence. As a survivor of gun violence, I could not be more proud of the measures we have taken to save the countless numbers of lives that may be affected by gun violence in the future. The time has passed for my son, the time has passed for others like my son, who was killed unnecessarily due to gun violence. But I am so grateful for this day. I’m so grateful for the research that will save many lives for generations to come.
I yield back the balance of my time."
The House heard her plea, which was also seconded by 143 other members of Congress, and approved the $50 million appropriation of funds. This will the first time in 20 years that government funds are used for the prevention of gun violence.
"I was proud to lead my colleagues in asking for this funding because I believe I have the responsibility as a survivor of gun violence to stand up to stop these tragedies," said McBath. "The CDC and NIH need this funding to better understand how to prevent gun deaths. When I visited the Injury Center in my district, I was heartbroken to hear about the severe lack of funding for gun-related injury research. This critical funding will save lives," added McBath.
The $50 million passed as part of the Labor-Health & Human Services-Education Appropriations bill for the Fiscal Year 2020.
To watch McBath speak on the House Floor, click here.