Free Community Forum To Focus On Reducing Violence

NorthBay Healthcare’s Trauma Program and Injury Prevention along with the Fairfield Police Activities League are teaming up for free community forum aimed at highlighting quick, easy solutions for effectively reducing violence in the community.

The event, which will begin with a lunch held from Noon to 12:30 p.m. and a presentation following from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. will be on Tuesday, May 9, at Fairfield PAL, 2195 Union Ave. in Fairfield, California. This event is open to any individual or organization interested in making a meaningful difference and advocating for youth.

The program will feature a presentation by Dr. Joseph Marshall, executive director and co-founder of the violence prevention program Alive and Free.

Marshall launched his efforts to “keep young people alive and free, unharmed by violence and free from incarceration” in 1987. His work continues today as the Omega Boys Club and Alive and Free program. Based out of San Francisco, Alive and Free describes itself as a “community of support that helps young people build character and work through any difficulties or trauma they are experiencing. It empowers youth to avoid peer pressure and situations that lead to violence, incarceration, or other negative outcomes like drug addiction or dropping out of school.”

Central to Marshall’s framework for violence prevention is that violence, like the flu, is a disease as and such, should be treated with its own unique prescription. Marshall says the disease of violence can be transmitted by the germs of bad information, bad instruction, bad advice and bad examples to young people that appear to be good.

At NorthBay Medical Center, the third leading cause for emergency room visits is trauma as the result of interpersonal violence. To raise awareness of violence as a disease and major public health concern in the community, NorthBay is partnering with PAL to create a community wide initiative to address the problem.

Those planning to attend the free conference in May must RSVP by May 2 in order to receive a free lunch. Contact Kiersten Reid at (707) 646-4449 or email Trauma@NorthBay.org.

For more information regarding the Alive and Free program, visit stayaliveandfree.org.