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Addressing Violent Extremism as Public Health Policy and Practice


Addressing violent extremism could potentially benefit from new initiatives that extend beyond criminal justice and are a part of public health policy and practice. This claim is based on knowledge from prior countering violent extremism (CVE) research and on immersion with communities, practitioners, and policymakers. This knowledge indicates that to date law enforcement-centered initiatives have not generated targeted evidence-based prevention or intervention initiatives, and they have had the unintended consequence of provoking community resistance. The Center for Disease Control’s Ten Essential Public Health Services is proposed as a new conceptual framework for a public health approach to addressing violent extremism which aims for policy and practice shifts. The public health approach offers opportunities for multi-purpose programming, avoiding stigma, and leveraging existing public health resources. Such shifts are illustrated by discussing the CVE program being further developed in Los Angeles, California, based in part upon the public health model.

Publication Information

Full Citation:

Weine, Stevan, David P. Eisenman, Janni Kinsler, Deborah C. Glik, and Chloe Polutnik. 2016. "Addressing Violent Extremism as Public Health Policy and Practice." Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression (June): 1-14. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/19434472.2016.1198413

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