Between the countless school shootings in the U.S. and other violent crimes such as the Toronto Van Attack, it seems that now more than ever, violence and hate are trending. Although these issues may seem far removed from us, they are not, and here are some important things to remember regarding these incidents.
Violence is complicated
On one hand, it’s simple, we need laws and enforcement in order to minimize crime. But on the other hand, it is far more complicated than that. Regardless of what you believe about gun control in the U.S. or law enforcement in Canada, we’re all well aware that laws, unfortunately, don’t eliminate violence. Extreme violence has deep roots that go far beyond what is and is not legal.
Many have studied the characteristics of those who commit crimes such as this, and research has proven that many of these acts of violence are simply desperate cries for attention and some sort of recognition. Yes, there are many other contributors to violence, such as ideologies, but a shocking number of violent crimes take place in the name of being seen.
Mental health support is key
Now more than ever, we need to support mental health in the workplace, at home, and everywhere we go. We never know what someone might be dealing with until we create a safe space for them to talk about it, and we strongly believe that where mental health support is readily available, extreme violence will be minimized.
We can all play a part
Don’t get us wrong, each individual is responsible for their own actions. However, as we have seen that violence is so often a response to lack of attention and understanding, it is a clear reminder of how important it is to treat one another with respect. As we go about our daily lives, let’s go out of our way to make our colleagues, family and friends feel heard and seen, it’s a simple way we can give back and contribute to a better tomorrow.