Twelve people, including a Ventura County sheriff’s sergeant, were killed in a gun massacre at the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, Calif. Once again, we at NACCHO are filled with sadness, anger, and frustration at yet another senseless act of violence.
While words often fail us in these times of mourning, it is particularly hard to know what else there is to say after yet another devastating display of gun violence. This is the 307th mass shooting in 2018, and while it doesn’t always make the headlines, we know that gun violence touches the lives of communities across the country each and every day.
Gun violence is a profound public health crisis in America. These tragedies have reached epidemic proportions and as with other epidemics, we must act to protect our communities’ public safety and well-being.
NACCHO remains committed to providing resources, training, and guidance to its local health department members to help in their response to this ongoing public health crisis. We also call upon lawmakers to take a public health approach to the violence epidemic. That starts with federal research on gun violence prevention, including suicide prevention. It also includes conducting background checks on all gun purchases, preventing individuals most at risk of violence from purchasing guns, banning assault weapons and large ammunition magazines, and engaging in research about how to effectively address violence. Moreover, health officials, government leaders, law enforcement, faith communities, and concerned citizens, including lawful gun owners, must come together to address the social and cultural issues that cause individuals to, far too often, resort to violence.
While we may not be able to stop all gun violence, these are critical, concrete steps to turn the tide. It is time for action.
Suspicious Activity and Active Shooter Resources
- Active Shooter and Complex Attack Resources
- Resources to promote the “If you see something, say something” campaign
- Training for personnel on recognizing and supporting suspicious activity
- Quick list of indicators
- Suspicious Activity Reporting Healthcare and Public Health Training
- Active Shooter Planning and Response in a Healthcare Setting
- Incorporating Active Shooter Incident Planning into Healthcare Facility Emergency Operations Plans
- MESH Coalition Active Shooter Training [Video]
- FBI active shooter resources
- ASPR Tracie collections on workplace violence
- ASPR Tracie collections on explosives and mass shooting
- Counter-IED training and awareness resources
- Department of Homeland Security active shooter and complex attack resources list
Risk Communications Resources
- NACCHO policy statement on risk communications capacity
- Challenges and developments in risk communication
- CDC’s crisis and emergency risk communications information
Psychological First Aid and Mental Health Resources
- Self-study program on Psychological First Aid
- Psychological First Aid Field Manual
- How Medical Reserve Corps units are using Psychological First Aid
- Tips for emergency and disaster response workers
- SAMHSA’s Disaster Distress Helpline: Call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor.