. "9 Taking Global Violence Prevention to the Next Step: Questions for the Workshop Participants." Violence Prevention in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Finding a Place on the Global Agenda, Workshop Summary. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2008.
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Violence Prevention in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Finding a Place on the Global Agenda - Workshop Summary
MAKING THE CASE FOR THE U.S. INTEREST INPREVENTING GLOBAL VIOLENCE
To address global violence generally and particularly in developing countries, participants suggested that economics, health, and security must be added to the moral imperative. These elements mirrored the presentations of several of the panels. Several workshop presentations showed that violence affects trade and tourism, and diminishes economic viability and market stability. Participants made the economic argument that the U.S. is part of the global economy which depends on stability. Since violence hinders investment, especially foreign investments that are more likely to be made in stable, nonviolent states, which would be seen as “better investment climates,” violence prevention could be a compelling reason for greater U.S. economic interests. The groups felt it important to strengthen the “business” argument with more concrete figures for a country’s investment in violence prevention (similar to World Bank and World Health Organisation [WHO] data). The health arguments were to portray violence as a risk factor and burden for other health issues (e.g., the huge impact on the spread of HIV/AIDS and its prevention, almost everyone acknowledged, cannot be accomplished without violence prevention). It was also suggested that violence prevention be incorporated into the public health agenda for maternal and child health. Popular messaging in the past around infectious disease management has stated that “viruses know no borders.” A tag line that includes violence was suggested: “Bacteria do not have passports, nor does violence.”
In terms of human security, the participant groups focused on the role of violence as a destabilizing force for nations and how a cycle of violence—interpersonal violence, collective violence, and terrorism—is created among unstable countries. Participants suggested that dialogue to confront the failed state argument for lack of intervention (e.g., Somalia) could be heightened and Rwanda could be seen or used as an example for success in acknowledgment of what transpired during the genocide, the provision of trauma counseling, and other activities. The groups noted that high-violence regions may cultivate individuals who reject U.S. or other outside interventions, which necessitates collaborating with local leadership to avoid negative impressions and fear of what the U.S. motives are in supporting violence prevention measures. Migration was also added as an issue to be addressed in making the case since violence cannot be expected to remain localized and isolated, which underscores the vital interest in preventing violence in the United States. Additionally, the participants suggested that violence serves as a stimulus for illegal and legal immigration, and while greater countrywide stability discourages some citizens from leaving, the “brain drain” created by those who do leave paralyzes countries that most