Co-authored by Kristine Ives, CALCASA Volunteer
During the National Sexual Assault Conference in August, Prevention Institute’s Annie Lyles presented a very popular session titled, All Communities Are Not Created Equal: Opportunities for a Health Equity Approach Within Sexual Assault Prevention. Discussed in a follow-up podcast, the session explored the ways in which health equity approaches can be applied to, are in line with, and contribute to sexual violence prevention.
For those interested in the health equity approach, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released a new guide, A Practitioner’s Guide for Advancing Equity: Community Strategies for Preventing Chronic Disease. The guide defines health equity as:
Health equity is the attainment of the highest level of health for all people. Achieving health equity requires valuing everyone equally with focused and ongoing societal efforts to address avoidable inequalities, historical and contemporary injustices, and the elimination of health and health care disparities.
Focusing on policy, systems, and environmental improvement strategies, the guide provides examples of ways to improve health equity through gaining community buy-in and developing initiatives that decrease negative health outcomes. Section 4 of the guide includes violence prevention as an essential aspect of chronic disease prevention, suggesting that rates of violence can be decreased by:
- Street Outreach and Community Mobilization
- Built Environmental Strategies
- Community Economic Development Strategies
The guide makes the all-important link between violence prevention and chronic disease prevention, offering a helpful overview of health equity approaches and examples that can be useful as we explore how to apply the approach to sexual and domestic violence prevention work. After all, a world in which there is health equity is indeed a world without sexual and domestic violence. Visit our blog for more on health equity and sexual and domestic violence prevention.
How have you used health equity in your prevention work?