Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE) and Sandy Hook Promise started National Youth Violence Prevention Week back in 2011 in an effort to raise awareness and promote education surrounding youth violence and preventing it before it happens.
The theme for this year’s prevention week is “Be a Superhero: Activate your SuperPowers!” April 8-12, 2019.
It is important to be aware of warning signs so action can be taken before people get hurt.
If you see or hear something, say something! Everyone (kids, teens, adults) should be educated on the warning signs of violence. If someone is planning an act of violence many times they will leave hints via social media, write something on a piece of paper or say something in a conversation with someone. Any communication about causing harm to others should be brought to a trusted adults attention immediately.
Warning Signs to be aware of (published by Sandy Hook Promise):
- A strong fascination or obsession with firearms
- Excessive study of firearms or mass shootings
- Excessive over-reaction or aggressiveness for a minor reason
- Gestures of violence or lack of commitment to school, sudden change in school performance
- Self-harm or violence toward others, long-term bullying, real or perceived feelings of being picked on or persecuted by others
- Feeling extremely isolated, socially withdrawn
- Access to firearms that is unsupervised, illegal access to firearms, bragging about access to firearms
- Making threats of violence either spoken, written, pictures, videos or gestures. 80% of school shooters told someone of their violent plans prior to the event.
- For additional warning signs, visit www.sandyhookpromise.org
Staggering Statistics (published by Sandy Hook Promise):
- There are 549,380 acts of gun violence each year
- Everyday 314 people are shot (41 of which are children 18 and under)
- Each year in the U.S. 114,644 people are shot (about 13% are children 18 and under)
- Everyday 95 people die from gun violence (6 are children 18 and under)
- Each year in the U.S. 34,668 die from gun violence (about 6.5% are children 18 and under)
- There are 56 suicides everyday or 20,208 gun suicides per year (640 are committed by children 18 and under)
Additional Facts (published by Sandy Hook Promise):
- Most criminal gun violence is committed by individuals who lack mental wellness (coping skills, anger management and other social-emotional skills)
- Between 4 and 6% of criminal gun violence is committed by an individual who is mentally ill.
- More than 90% of individuals who die from suicide had a diagnosable mental disorder.
- Most mass shootings are planned for 6 months to a year and warning signs were given that were either not understood, not acted upon or not shared with someone who could help.
- In 4 out of 5 school shootings, at least one other person had knowledge of the attacker’s plan but failed to report it.
- About 70% of people who commit suicide tell someone their plans or give some other type of warning signs.
- Guns used in about 80% of all school incidents were taken from the child’s home, a friend or relative.
- Approximately half of all gun owners do not lock up their guns of which 40% are homes with children 18 or under.
Do your part and help share this important information with your family, friends and loved ones. Encourage them to “say something” if they see or hear something that doesn’t seem right or causes them to be uncomfortable or concerned.