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Interpersonal violence prevention: A recent public health mandate 

Interpersonal violence prevention: A recent public health mandate
Interpersonal violence prevention: A recent public health mandate

Deborah Prothrow–Stith

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date: 19 May 2022

This chapter on public health presents approaches to prevent interpersonal violence in response to the epidemic of adolescent and young adult homicide in the United States, and the growing international attention and concerns about this problem. The chapter provides a short history of the efforts within public health to address violence, a definition and description of the problem, and a discussion of examples of public health approaches to violence prevention. While several types of violence are briefly discussed, the focus of the chapter is youth violence and the increase in youth homicide in the United States. The 1987 United States homicide rate for 15–24–year-old men of 22 per 100 000 was the highest among industrialized countries not at war in 1986/1987 (Fig. 10.5.1). By 1991, it had increased to 37 per 100 000, but declined to 20 per 100 000 in 2004, still the highest among industrialized nations. While high homicide rates also plagued South Africa at the same time, the political instability and violent freedom struggle make it an exception. For further details on international issues, we recommend the 2003 WHO report, World Report on Violence and Health (Krug 2002) and the WHO website, (WHO).

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