The hours and days after a shooting are often called the golden hour for survivors of gun violence and for their families. This is a time when support, outreach and services can redirect anger and potentially stop a retaliatory shooting.
In this podcast series we have talked a lot about the number of homicides caused by gun violence. The number of people murdered by guns makes headlines. What isn’t talked about nearly as often are the survivors of violent crime and what happens to them.
In 2020 there were 1,776 nonfatal shootings in Philadelphia. That number did not get nearly as much attention as the 499 homicides, but the consequences of those shootings, too, were devastating and long-lasting.
In this episode we introduce listeners to a handful of local survivors of gun violence—from a former history teacher who’s now devoting his life to uplifting youth before they have a chance to engage in violence, to men whose primary source of support comes from spending time with other survivors. We also learn about government and nonprofit agencies working to help victims and their families.
One steady chorus continues: Communities need more resources. A new chorus emerges from the victims themselves: Could the solution be more empathy—for shooters?
Listen to the full episode here:
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Extra reading on the issues highlighted in this episode
More ways to dive in and stay engaged
- Support Northwest Victim Services
- Read Helen Ubiñas’ columns at The Philadelphia Inquirer
- Volunteer with or support the Anti-Violence Partnership of Philadelphia
- Learn more about and donate to the ECO Foundation
How you can take action
Contact city officials and tell them to invest in data-backed solutions that work to curb violence. Here are the best people to reach out to, with links to contact information.
- Mayor Jim Kenney: (215) 686-2181
- First Deputy Managing Director Vanessa Garrett Harley
- Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson
- Councilmember Cindy Bass
- District Attorney Larry Krasner
- Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw
- Office of Violence Prevention
Now a little thank you …
Nadira Goffe is our Associate Producer. Thank you to Kyle Morris and the ECO Foundation. Thank you to Helen Ubiñas for going above and beyond the call of a journalist and doing the work to get victims support. Thanks to Melany Nelson and her team at Northwest Services. Thank you Victoria Wylie and all of the members of the victims support group, especially Leon Harris and Jaleel King. King is an incredibly talented photographer and you can find his work on his Instagram account @JaleelKing. We used a clip in this episode from CBS Philly. And finally, thanks to Spring Point Partners for funding this project.Header photo courtesy of The ECO Foundation