Violence prevention collaboration held in Spanish Lake -

Violence prevention collaboration held in Spanish Lake

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Residents of Spanish Lake piled into the cafeteria at Twillman Elementary school Saturday morning for a community engagement on ways to end violence in the area.

The event featured speakers from the St. Louis County Police Department along with other health and public advocacy professionals.  Free gun locks were available to residents who came since that was a big part of keeping residents safe.

“Today is about getting the public involved in violence prevention and understanding it. We hope to reach the youth and the adults and get a conversation going to zero in on the problems,” Spanish Lake Community Association President Julie Griffith said.

“The strategy of the collaborative is to address it as a public health issue when you look at (violence) as an epidemic,” Warren Hayden of the county’s Human Services Department said.

Officials say gun violence is the leading cause of death in the United States for all African-Americans between the ages of 16 and 24.  It’s the second leading cause of death in the country for all people in that age range.

These community engagements like the one at Twillman Elementary school are going to continue as time goes on.  Officials say they understand this is not something that will change overnight.

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