A panel in the U.S. House of Representatives passed a $20 billion spending bill Thursday that includes funding for programs aimed to help victims of gun violence.
A majority of the bill — which also included provisions regarding jobs for young immigrants, churches and politics, and assisted suicide — was intended to fund the Treasury Department, the Judiciary and other federal departments, the Associated Press reported.
The provision related to gun violence victims would allow states to use money from the Crime Victims Fund to create or bolster already existing hospital-based programs meant to help such victims.
Robin Lloyd of gun control group Americans for Responsible Solutions, founded by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, praised lawmakers for including the provision in their bill.
“We are pleased to see that this bill includes ARS-suggested language that encourages states to consider using funding that is made available through the Crime Victims Fund to establish or expand hospital-based violence intervention programs, which are proven to help reduce urban gun violence,” Lloyd said. “This provision will not only allow more firearms assault victims to receive the services they need, it will save lives in at-risk communities.”
The organization noted the bill also included $73 million to fund the National Instant Criminal Background Check System and $1.3 billion for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.