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FEATURE: Violent Disorder Needs A New Kind Of Cure

Posted by Mark Cantrell on December 22, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Violence is a disease

By treating violence as a public health issue, Scotland’s Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) broke ranks from the conventional law and order model to create a proactive multi-agency approach that has clear lessons for those tackling the more ‘mundane’ issues of anti-social behavior.  Mark Cantrell wrote about the organisation in the September 2012 edition of Housing...

“The sin is ignorance,” said Detective Chief Superintendent John Carnochan; a phrase that perhaps cuts both ways as we contemplate the malignancy of violence and anti social behaviour (ASB). As a society, we can bang on about law and order, take a macho stance and demand tougher penalties, but as Carnochan pointed out, it takes us no further forward.


At the end of the day, the criminal justice system can only mop up the mess, not resolve its root causes; that’s society’s job but all too often, society shrugs it off as somebody else’s problem, or retreats with the defeatist perception that violence will always be with us. this isn’t a view that’s finding favour north of the border: attitudes can and must change.


Using the image of an iceberg, he said: “The top end, the bit that we see, is where most of us work. We chip away at that – new legislation, new laws, lock more people up – but it doesn’t make a blind bit of difference to the size of the iceberg. it just keeps bobbing up a little. if we want to shrink that iceberg, we need to raise the temperature of the water. And that’s the big stuff. That’s stuff like equality. The societies in the world that are the least violent are the most equal.”


Read the rest of the article HERE.


Northern, Midlands, and Southern Housing magazine,

September 2012

Categories: JOURNALISM, ARTICLES, FEATURE

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