LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A professor in the School of Social Work at Spalding University will soon start a research study with teens and gun violence.

Diontae Reed, or Tay, as friends call him was shot in the back two years ago when he was just 13 years old. 

"We live in really tough neighborhoods and to be honest we can get shot any time, just like how I did," Reed said.

He is one of the participants in the study, which also includes other young gun shot survivors, parents and family members. 

The purpose is to explore their experiences and use that information for future prevention and intervention. 

Community Activist Christopher 2X is calling the recent string of youth violence a public health emergency.

"It's about not getting into a habit of trying to connect to the magnetic pull of the streets and attractiveness of it that can get you hurt," 2X said.

20 participants have already been chosen for the study, which will begin next week.

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