Violence Is A Public Health Issue

Posted: February 20, 2019

YA! featured in Pacific Standard

interrupters editedYouth ALIVE!, National Network of Hospital Based Violence Intervention (NNHVIP), and peer programs like Cure Violence joined together to talk violence as a public health issue  in a recent Pacific Standard article on gun violence and the search for a cure:

The No. 1 indicator for future violence is prior experience of violence (not, as some might erroneously assume, mental illness). According to some studies, individuals who have experienced violence are themselves up to three times more likely to commit violence against other people.

Anne Marks, the executive director of Youth Alive!, an Oakland-based organization that uses a healing, intervention approach to addressing gun deaths and gang violence, puts it simply: “I have yet to come across someone who has done violence who has not themselves been subject to violence.”

Because of this, some of the best spots for intervention are hospitals. In 1994, the organization Marks now leads helped found the National Network of Hospital-based Violence Intervention Programs, a group of organizations—including Cure Violence—that base their operations out of emergency rooms.

Read the complete article here.

In it, you’ll find an overview of the prevention, intervention and healing approaches that guide Youth ALIVE’s program and service offerings. And an insightful quote, from long time violence prevention advocate and Youth ALIVE!’s tireless Executive Director, Anne Marks: “I have yet to come across someone who has done violence who has not themselves been subject to violence.” Our Violence Interrupters and Caught in the Crossfire Programs are key components of the hospital based intervention. These channels are instrumental in interrupting the cycle of violence.

At Youth ALIVE! and within the National Network of Hospital Based Intervention Programs, we employ evidence based practices.  Therefore, we subscribe to a public health model for violence prevention.  One positive about an article like this one, is that it exposes this model and mindset to a broader base of readers. We know that wider exposure such as this is critical to more widespread support and adoption of the model.