In partnership with the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) and Safe States Alliance, UNITY hosted a meeting of state health officials in May 2011 on preventing violence in U.S. cities. The meeting synthesis features the best thinking of state health leaders such as John Auerbach, Massachusetts commissioner and president of ASTHO. Key recommendations that emerged for state health agencies include:
- Reframe public perception of violence and of perpetrators.
- Monitor trends and take advantage of opportunities to connect violence with any related issue that gains momentum or unexpectedly captures the spotlight.
- Include strategies to prevent violence in health-related proposals.
- Leverage current resources to prevent violence.
- Collaborate with other state agencies, local health departments, and with American Public Health Association, ASTHO, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Prevention Institute, UNITY and Safe States Alliance.
The meeting synthesis also includes specific guidance for cities, regional health offices and national organizations to support state-level efforts. Read the meeting synthesis to learn how you can help elevate violence as a priority public health issue.