A new research initiative is looking at the intersection between gun violence and hate.
Maura’s Voice is dedicated to studying the relationships between mental illness, hate and violence. Researchers hope this information will help with future policymaking.
The initiative is named after Maura Binkley, a victim of the Tallahassee yoga studio shooting in November.
“We’re definitely working on some of those micro-level issues, and hope to provide the type of research, the type of information that can then support the policy," Jeff Binkley, Maura's father, said. "But again, without cultural change in an overarching level, it will be difficult to do that.”
The organization is partnered with Florida State University. Binkley hopes the research will contribute to conversations about gun policy.
“The issue is hate in our society," Binkley said. "And again, as I said, our culture at a fundamental level has to change. If that’s done, policies with regard to firearms and regulation and how we identify and manage potentially dangerous people, then those will develop out of that.”
The launch for Maura’s Voice took place on March 4, what would have been her 22nd birthday.