Across the country, healthy food and activity leaders have identified violence and the fear of violence as major roadblocks to the success of chronic disease prevention strategies. The impact of violence in communities is far-reaching: when people don't feel safe in their communities, they are less likely to use local parks and community centers and access services such as public transportation. When parents don't feel safe in their communities, they are hesitant to let their children play outside or walk to school. Also, communities perceived as being unsafe are less likely to benefit from investments such as grocery stores.
Until now, very little research on the impact of community violence on healthy eating and activity—and potential solutions—has been done. With funding from Kaiser Permanente, Prevention Institute has written Addressing the Intersection: Preventing Violence and Promoting Healthy Eating and Active Living.
Addressing the Intersection provides an explanation of the inter-relationship between violence and healthy eating and activity. The findings and recommendations offered in this paper can support practitioners and advocates in their work to prevent chronic disease in communities heavily impacted by violence. We also hope that this paper will be a resource for a broader audience, including funders, policymakers, researchers, and anyone working to build safe, healthy communities.
Find out more about our work connecting safety to chronic disease prevention, and the innovative pilot projects we coordinate through the Convergence Partnership.