An assault, a shooting, a homicide, or any use of force affects people in many deep ways.
Violence causes physical and emotional harm. It can inflict fear, a constant sense of unease. It can cause short- and long-term trauma. Violence can affect people throughout their lives – including their health. It can lead to poor birth outcomes, compromised childhood development, negative health behaviors, physical and mental illness, and premature deaths.
And violence doesn’t just affect the immediate people harmed. It ripples throughout a community, affecting family members, loved ones, friends, and neighbors.
Violence is a pressing public health threat
Violence is a real and pressing public health threat, and it doesn’t affect New Yorkers equally.
We can look at violence by looking at data on non-fatal assault hospitalizations – violence that results in somebody going to the hospital, but not dying. While the hospitalization data capture where the person injured in the assault lives – and not where the assault occurred – they can be interpreted as indicators of violence in the neighborhood.
Violence is highest in NYC neighborhoods with higher rates of poverty.
Any adverse health outcome that affects one population more than another – a health inequity – deserves special scrutiny. New York City’s high-poverty neighborhoods, which also have a higher percentage of residents of color, were created and maintained by systemic racism and historical disinvestment. The resulting higher rates of violence that exist in these communities create an unjust health disparity experienced by their residents.
Theodore Roosevelt, in Harlem?
Okay, it’s a Fine Fare.
But what is Theodore Roosevelt doing in the pediment above?