Defining Public Violence helps discover solutions

More than 70 percent of Americans have told pollsters that they believe public violence is an inevitable part of life and nearly as many worry that a member of their family will be injured in such an incident.

But what is public violence?

The Center for Public Violence Recovery defines public violence as a random violent act that traumatizes a community. Public violence may include such incidents as those involving guns, knives, vehicles, fights, or hate violence.

Public safety and other local government agencies are expected to assure the community becomes resilient after incidents of public violence. But without advance collaboration with local community organizations including faith leaders and human services nonprofits, a community can never really become resilient following incidents of public violence.

Without advance planning, the current approach often results in misinformation, fragmentation of services, unaddressed trauma in residents and first responders, recurring cycles of violence, and a growing sense of hopelessness.

The Center is proposing a new framework and protocols designed to create a Whole Community response to public violence. When a community is prepared to care for itself following public violence, studies have shown that the psychosocial health of each individual is improved. To learn more about how your community can improve its response to public violence, email the Center at [email protected]