“Cure Violence stops the spread of violence in communities by using the methods and strategies associated with disease control – detecting and interrupting conflicts, identifying and treating the highest risk individuals, and changing social norms – resulting reductions in violence of 40% to 70%.” – Cure Violence, Website
To understand the work that Cure Violence does, it is important to understand their perspective of violence being a ‘Health Issue.’
Cure Violence lays on their website the various ways violence fits the definition of a health issue.
“1. Direct effect of violence are physical injury to the victim of violence” and “2. Indirect effects of violence are mental trauma and behavioral affects.”
Their website goes on to explain that the mental trauma caused from actions of violence often lead the victim to an increased risk of violent behavior themselves.
Finally, according to the website, characteristics of an epidemic disease are clustering, spread and transmission all which can be seen in violence.
Through this philosophy, Cure Violence created a health model to reverse the characteristics of an epidemic.
1. Interrupt transmission of the disease.
2. Reduce the risk of the highest risk.
3. Change community norms.
Details of each step can be found on their website.
Their mission is to “reduce violence globally using disease control and behavior change methods.” Ultimately, Cure Violence would like to shift the paradigm that understands violence as a moral corruption, to one that seeks to understand how violence is manifested and spread.
Cure Violence’s Health Model is used in more that 50 cities and eight countries including South Africa, Syria and even Chicago. In fact, Cure Violence produced a documentary of called The Interrupters about Cure Violence volunteers who are on the streets of Chicago everyday interrupting violence.
CALL TO ACTION:
All images are from http://cureviolence.org.