All we can do is keep at it. According to the Violence Project who have studied every mass shooting incident since 1966, Active Shooters have 4 common elements: 1. Early childhood trauma and exposure to violence at a young age; 2. An identifiable grievance or crisis point; 3. Validation for their belief system, have studied past shootings to find inspiration; 4. the means to carry out the attack. All of these items can be addressed. Specifically, Number 2 by EAPs who promote and engage in preventative planning with their organizational clients. "Grievance and crisis points" can occur in workplaces and according to the Department of Homeland Security, most commonly around organizational change. In fact, the DOH cites in its 2015 Interagency Security Committee the value of an active, well-known EAP presence towards its workplace violence prevention initiatives. EAPs are subject matter experts and should be involved when planning before, during, and after these situational events. Over-all, EAPs can and should offer more than just helping with the Preparedness and Recovery Phases in emergency planning. EAPs can incorporate meaningful workplace violence programs and participate in threat assessment teams with workplaces and school systems. As the frequency of these tragic events continue to trend upward, so too is critical analysis of emergency response plans. This analysis goes further than just looking at law enforcement response, but the entire systemic response, including EAP. EAPs are good at Responding. We are becoming more included in Preparedness activity, but how involved are we in the Prevention Phase? Are we ready with the tools, services and education and resources for when our clients come calling for these prevention plans? Prevention is, after all, what EAPs mission is based on. Your thoughts.
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