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An Lxcerpt erta|n|ng to the Long Gun keg|stry from the eer kev|ewed Study
"Canad|an I|rearms Leg|s|at|on and Lffects on nom|c|de 1974 to 2008"
An Ana|ys|s of the Assoc|at|on 8etween the Long Gun keg|stry and Su|c|de by I|rearm
November 2011
Ca||||n Langmann MD hD
D|v|s|on of Lmergency Med|c|ne
Department of Med|c|ne at McMaster Un|vers|ty
nam||ton Genera| nosp|ta|
237 8arton Street Last
nam||ton Cntar|o
L8L 2k2
90S S212100 ex 76207
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S|gn|f|cance of the Study "conodion lireorms Leqis/otion ond ffects on nomicide 1974 to 2008"
O 1he research has been peer revlewed and accepLed for publlcaLlon ln Lhe Iootool of
lotetpetsoool vloleoce
O L ls Lhe only sLudy examlnlng Lhose effecLs over Lhe years 1974 Lo 2008
O L ls Lhe only sLudy Lo use Lhree dlfferenL sLaLlsLlcal meLhods Lo conflrm resulLs
O L ls Lhe only sLudy LhaL examlnes boLh lmmedlaLe and gradual effecLs as leglslaLlon ls ofLen
lmplemenLed over several years
Lxecut|ve Summary
O 1he raLe of homlclde has been decllnlng ln Canada slnce 1974 prlor Lo federal leglslaLlon
O 1he reglsLraLlon of long guns began ln 1999
O 1he ma[orlLy of long guns were reglsLered ln 2002
O nLerrupLed Llme serles regresslon analysls falls Lo show a leglslaLlon assoclaLed sLaLlsLlcally
slgnlflcanL beneflclal effecL on flrearms homlclde homlclde by long gun and spousal homlclde by
long gun
O , analysls of boLh lmmedlaLe or gradual effecLs of leglslaLlon demonsLraLed no beneflclal
assoclaLed effecLs on flrearms homlclde homlclde by long gun and spousal homlclde by long gun
O olnpolnL analysls demonsLraLed no beneflclal assoclaLed change ln Lhe Lrend of flrearms
homlclde homlclde by long gun and spousal homlclde by long gun
O 1here were no beneflclal assoclaLlons beLween leglslaLlon and Lhe crlmlnal charge of ulscharge
of a llrearm wlLh nLenL"
O 1lme serles regresslon demonsLraLes no sLaLlsLlcally slgnlflcanL beneflclal assoclaLlon beLween
Lhe long gun reglsLry sulclde and sulclde by flrearms
O nLldepressanL medlcaLlon SSs were lnLroduced ln 1989 aL Lhe same Llme polnL flrearm
leglslaLlon ln Canada was lnLroduced
O Sulclde raLes rapldly decllne ln 1989 and ln 1993 as more anLldepressanL medlcaLlons are
lnLroduced
O Sulclde sLudles LhaL do noL lnclude Lhe use of anLldepressanL medlcaLlon Lo conLrol for effecLs
are quesLlonable
kecommendat|ons
O 1he resulLs of Lhe peer revlewed sLudy suggesL LhaL Lhe dlsconLlnuaLlon of Lhe reglsLraLlon of
nonresLrlcLed flrearms wlll noL resulL ln an lncrease ln homlclde or spousal homlclde raLes by
long gun
O 1he dlsconLlnuaLlon of Lhe reglsLraLlon of nonresLrlcLed flrearms ls noL llkely Lo resulL ln an
lncrease ln sulclde raLe by long gun



ntroduct|on
1he followlng brlef conLalns excerpLs relevanL Lo Lhe long gun reglsLry (LC% conLalned ln Lhe peer
revlewed sLudy ooqmooo c coooJloo llteotms eqlslotloo ooJ ffects oo nomlclJe 1974 to 2008
Iootool of lotetpetsoool vloleoce AccepteJ fot pobllcotloo 5eptembet J0 2011 lo ptess Some flgures
are lncluded here Lo provlde a vlsual represenLaLlon of Lhe resulLs found ln Lhe sLudy for Lhose noL
famlllar wlLh sLaLlsLlcal lnLerpreLaLlon
ncluded ln Lhe Lxecut|ve Summary are Lhe maln resulLs found ln Lhe orlglnal sLudy
s well an examlnaLlon of Lhe effecLs of Lhe LC on sulclde raLes ln Canada has been lncluded
ubllcaLlon agreemenL beLween ur Langmann and Lhe ournal of nLerpersonal vlolence prohlblLs
submlsslon of Lhe orlglnal sLudy as submlsslons Lo Lhe CommlLLee are publlshed by arllamenL for publlc
access 1hose wlshlng Lo vlew Lhe orlglnal publlcaLlon can schedule a vlewlng wlLh ur Langmann and all
meLhods are avallable on requesL
ke|evant 1|me||ne of the Long Gun keg|stry
rlor Lo 1998 nonresLrlcLed flrearms commonly known as longguns generally conslsLlng of rlfles and
shoLguns meeLlng mlnlmum lengLh crlLerla were noL reglsLered 1he 1993 llrearms cL requlred Lhe
reglsLraLlon of all flrearms and Lhls was flnally lmplemenLed on uecember 1998 1 8y 200 lL would be
mandaLory LhaL all flrearms would be reglsLered
eglsLraLlon of flrearms ln Lhe Canadlan llrearms eglsLraLlon SysLem (ClS% began slowly afLer 1998
and mosL reglsLraLlon occurred ln laLe 2002 2
Methodo|ogy
ll daLa were obLalned from SLaLlsLlcs Canada urlsLaL uaLabase and C-S, for Lhe years 1974 Lo 2008
n Lhe orlglnal sLudy Lhree meLhods Lyplcally uLlllzed ln epldemlology were used Lo examlne for effecLs of
Lhe lmplemenLaLlon of leglslaLlon lnLerrupLed Llme serles regresslon auLoregresslve lnLegraLed movlng
average (,% and olnpolnL regresslon sofLware (hLLp//survelllancecancergov/[olnpolnL/ 1he
followlng flgures or graphs wlll deplcL a 2 dlmenslonal vlsuallzaLlon of Lhe regresslon analysls meanL for
nonsLaLlsLlcal experLs
n Lhe orlglnal sLudy mulLlple years posL leglslaLlon and poLenLlal gradual effecLs due Lo lmplemenLaLlon
over a sequence of years are lnvesLlgaLed for beneflclal effecLs on homlclde -o oLher sLudy currenLly
exlsLs uLlllzlng Lhese meLhods
When lndlcaLed mulLlple regresslon lncluded varlables ln Lhe llLeraLure found Lo be assoclaLed wlLh
crlmlnallLy obLalned from avallable daLa Lhe medlan age of populaLlon populaLlon aLLrlbuLed Lo
lmmlgraLlon populaLlon per pollce offlcers Lhe raLe of prlson lncarceraLlon Lhe raLe of unemploymenL
Lhe percenL of Lhe age 13 Lo 24 year old populaLlon ln Lhe low lncome brackeL percenL of Lhe LoLal
populaLlon ln Lhe low lncome brackeL and Lhe C- lndex of equallLy 7
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Understand|ng nterrupted 1|me Ser|es kegress|on
1hls form of analysls looks for boLh lmmedlaLe lmpacL effecLs of leglslaLlon on homlclde as well as a
change ln Lhe Lrend of homlclde posL lmplemenLaLlon of leglslaLlon solld llne ls generaLed by
regresslon analysls Lo sLaLlsLlcally predlcL Lhe homlclde raLe expecLed aL each year due Lo conLrlbuLlng
facLors such as unemploymenL or Lhe age of Lhe populaLlon 1he break ln Lhe llne represenLs Lhe year of
lmplemenLaLlon of leglslaLlon 1he lmmedlaLe reducLlon lmpacL of leglslaLlon also known as a sLep
effecL" ls represenLed by Lhe gap
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on Lhe followlng graph (llgure 1% whlle Lhe change ln Lhe Lrend ls
represenLed by


s homlclde has been decllnlng prlor Lo leglslaLlon lL ls lmporLanL Lo accounL for and deLermlne lf Lhere
has been a change ln Lhls Lrend due Lo leglslaLlon sLaLlsLlcal LesL ls performed LhaL deLermlnes
wheLher Lhe slze of Lhe lmpacL effecL and/or change ln Lhe Lrend ls larger Lhan whaL would occur slmply
due Lo chance or yearly varlaLlon lor example ln Lhe graph below leglslaLlon has caused an lmmedlaLe
reducLlon
2


ln Lhe raLe of homlclde and an lncreaslng speed ln Lhe decllnlng Lrend

of homlclde
raLes
I|gure 1



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kesu|ts of Ana|ys|s
nlLlal analysls demonsLraLes LhaL as Lhe populaLlon ages Lhere has been an assoclaLed decllne ln Lhe
homlclde raLe by flrearm slnce 1974 (llgure 2% When Lhe effecL of Lhe aglng populaLlon ls Laken lnLo
accounL Lhe homlclde raLe by flrearm ls consLanL
I|gure 2




1he flrsL regresslon analysls looks aL Lhe effecLs of Lhe LC lmplemenLed ln 1999 on Lhe effecLs of Lhe
overall flrearm homlclde raLe Solld doLs represenL Lhe acLual homlclde raLe ln each year s deplcLed by
Lhe calculaLed regresslon (solld llne% ln llgure Lhere has been a conslsLenL decllne ln homlclde raLes
slnce 1974 LhaL began prlor Lo federal leglslaLlon and ln 1999 Lhere ls no sLaLlsLlcally slgnlflcanL
beneflclal assoclaLed lmpacL or Lrend effecL on homlclde raLes due Lo Lhe LC 1hls analysls also lncludes
Lhe effecLs of Lhe aglng populaLlon lncarceraLlon raLe lmmlgraLlon pollce and C- whlch have been
shown Lo be sLaLlsLlcally assoclaLed wlLh flrearm homlclde
I|gure 3


Firearm Homicide per 100,000
0.4
0.5
0.6
0.7
0.8
0.9
1.0
1.1
1.2
1.3
1.4
1974 1978 1982 1986 1990 1994 1998 2002 2006
Year
7

-exL an analysls of Lhe homlclde raLe by long gun ls deplcLed ln llgure 4 -o sLaLlsLlcally slgnlflcanL
beneflclal effecLs were found due Lo Lhe LC 1he aglng populaLlon and lncarceraLlon raLes shown Lo be
sLaLlsLlcally assoclaLed wlLh homlclde raLes by long gun are also lncluded ln Lhe analysls
I|gure 4


ong Gun Homicide per 100,000
0.1
0.2
0.3
0.4
0.5
0.6
0.7
0.8
0.9
1974 1978 1982 1986 1990 1994 1998 2002 2006
Year
8

-o beneflclal effecLs on spousal homlclde by long guns are deplcLed ln llgure 3 1he effecLs of Lhe aglng
populaLlon ls also lncluded ln Lhe analysls
I|gure S


$pousaI ong Gun Homicide per 100,000
0.00
0.05
0.10
0.15
0.20
0.25
0.30
1,974 1,978 1,982 1,986 1,990 1,994 1,998 2,002 2,006
Year
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1he same meLhodology used above ls applled Lo Lhe LoLal sulclde raLe over Lhe years 1991 Lo 2008 Cnly
Lhe years 1991 Lo 2008 were examlned Lo accounL or conLrol for any background effecLs from leglslaLlon
lmplemenLed ln 1991 and 1993 s can be seen when Lhe LC ls lmplemenLed ln 1999 Lhere ls no
slgnlflcanL effecL on LoLal sulclde ln llgure ,oreover Lhe overall sulclde raLe has remalned relaLlvely
sLeady durlng Lhls Llme
I|gure 6


%otaI $uicide per 100,000
0.00
2.00
4.00
6.00
8.00
10.00
12.00
14.00
16.00
1991 1993 1995 1997 1999 2001 2003 2005 2007
Year
10

-o slgnlflcanL effecLs are assoclaLed wlLh Lhe lmplemenLaLlon of Lhe LC ln 1999 are seen on sulclde
raLe by long gun ln llgure 7
I|gure 7


$uicide by Firearm Rate per 100,000
Cutoff 1999
1.00
1.50
2.00
2.50
3.00
3.50
4.00
4.50
1991 1993 1995 1997 1999 2001 2003 2005 2007
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kecommendat|ons
1he resulLs of Lhe peer revlewed sLudy suggesL LhaL Lhe dlsconLlnuaLlon of reglsLraLlon of nonresLrlcLed
flrearms wlll noL resulL ln an lncrease ln homlclde or spousal homlclde raLes Lhrough Lhe uLlllzaLlon of
long guns ,oreover Lhe dlsconLlnuaLlon of Lhe reglsLraLlon of nonresLrlcLed flrearms ls noL llkely Lo
resulL ln an lncrease ln Lhe aggregaLe sulclde raLe by long gun










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Iurther kesearch on Su|c|de
lurLher analysls of sulclde ls compllcaLed by Lhe facL LhaL medlcaLlon effecLlve ln Lhe prevenLlon of
sulclde known as SSs were lnLroduced ln 1989 and dramaLlcally lncreased ln use ln 199 8 9 1hls
evenL occurs aL Lhe same Llme as flrearms leglslaLlon ls lnLroduced ln 1991 and 1993 1herefore ln order
Lo properly evaluaLe Lhe effecLs on sulclde by flrearms leglslaLlon Lhe beneflclal effecLs due Lo SS
medlcaLlon musL be accounLed for n oLher words any beneflclal effecLs on sulclde may be slmply due Lo
Lhe lnLroducLlon of SS medlcaLlon and noL flrearm leglslaLlon

Pemels , C koren and 1 lnarson locteoseJ ose of ootlJeptessoots lo coooJo 19812000 nn
harmacoLher 2002 (9% p 1739
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,llane ,S eL al ,oJelloq of tbe tempotol pottetos of flooxetloe ptesctlptloos ooJ solclJe totes lo tbe
uolteJ 5totes LoS ,ed 200 (% p e190
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keferences
1 Canada CC epottmeot of Iostlce cboptet 10 costs of lmplemeotloq tbe coooJloo
llteotms ltoqtom 2002 Cfflce of Lhe udlLor Ceneral of Canada CLLawa
2 Pung k llteotms 5totlstlcs upJoteJ 1obles 200 esearch and SLaLlsLlcs ulvlslon ueparLmenL
of usLlce Canada
Lee , and 1 Slack obot motket cooJltloos ooJ vloleot ctlme octoss tbe mettoooometto
JlvlJe Soc Scl es 2008 37(% p 738
4 ,arvell 18 and C ,oody 5peclflcotloo ltoblems lollce evels ooJ ctlme kotes
Crlmlnology 199 34(4% p 094
3 ,auser C and Polmes Ao evolootloo of tbe 1977 coooJloo flteotms leqlslotloo valuaLlon
evlew 1992(1% p 017
-adanovsky and CunhaCruz 1be telotlve coottlbotloo of locome loepoollty ooJ
lmptlsoomeot to tbe votlotloo lo bomlclJe totes omooq evelopeJ (Oc% 5ootb ooJ ceottol
Ametlcoo cooottles Soclal Sclence and ,edlclne 2009 69(9% p 14130
7 CulmeL ctlme lo coooJo ooJ tbe uolteJ 5totes A compototlve ooolysls Soclology and
nLhropology 1999 36 p 89408
8 Pemels , C koren and 1 lnarson locteoseJ ose of ootlJeptessoots lo coooJo 1981
2000 nn harmacoLher 2002 36(9% p 1739
9 ,llane ,S eL al ,oJelloq of tbe tempotol pottetos of flooxetloe ptesctlptloos ooJ solclJe
totes lo tbe uolteJ 5totes LoS ,ed 200 3(% p e190