There is growing momentum in response to the potential elimination of CDC’s youth violence prevention activities. Nevertheless, youth violence prevention funding remains at serious risk, and we need to act quickly. There is more than funding at stake; this is about saving lives.
Right now we need to maintain our emphasis on ensuring the cuts do not take place and keep up our message to lawmakers: We cannot eliminate youth violence prevention at CDC. Please sign-on to a letter to Congress that asks members to protect federal youth violence prevention funding at CDC. You will be joining national partners such as National Association of City and County Health Officials (NACCHO) and the Safe States Alliance and local efforts such as the Violence Prevention Coalition of Greater Los Angeles when you sign on.
We have learned over the past 30 years how to help maintain community safety, reduce deaths and injuries and strengthen the environment needed for communities to thrive. Wiping out this funding threatens the entire public health approach to preventing violence and everything we have learned over the past decades. We cannot leave our children’s safety solely in the hands of the criminal justice system.
A public health approach to violence saves lives and supports thriving communities. Reducing violence is a powerful way to stimulate economic development in communities. The public health approach brings a method and approach to the table that is grounded in the science that has confirmed that violence is preventable. We must not wait until after-the-fact for more expensive responses and needless suffering. The federal funding level for youth violence prevention activities is a small but vital investment in the safety and future of our young people and our communities.
Among the efforts at stake is Prevention Institute’s UNITY (Urban Networks Increasing Thriving Youth) Initiative. UNITY works with cities all over the country to enhance their efforts to prevent violence. UNITY has also informed efforts to address violence as a contributor to chronic illness, the major contributor to skyrocketing healthcare costs. (See: the UNITY Fact Sheet: Links Between Violence and Chronic Diseases.)
Thank you for your continued action and forwarding this email to your networks.
For additional information, including fact sheets, visit Prevention Institute’s new Preventing Violence Advocacy page which is frequently updated.
Since the Senate Appropriations Committee voted to eliminate all youth violence prevention funding for CDC, we have: