The Wales Violence Prevention Unit operates on of a collective passion from the public sector and voluntary organisations in Wales to prevent violence. Many of members come organisations that have been identified as key responders to the pandemic, which are under significant pressure yet still doing all they can to protect the people and communities in Wales. We are here to support these organisations in their response, providing knowledge, capacity and capability in these trying times.
Our response involves four key points of action:
Bringing partnership data together through our violence surveillance system will enable us to analyse and monitor the scale, nature, and impact of violence and identify any trends, patterns, and hotspots emerging during and after the outbreak.
Data sharing and analysis will ensure that emerging trends and patterns of violence are recorded and understood by partners; to ensure that preventative and response measures are data and intelligence-led; and to ensure that analysis can be undertaken following the outbreak to inform response to future events and build the international evidence base.
As a collaborative, multi-agency team, we can support partners in ensuring strategic communications are joined up and evidence-informed. We will ensure that violence is considered among the communications plans of partners, that preventionis built into communications and social marketing campaigns, and that these responses are informed by evidence.
Supporting frontline services
Frontline services may be experiencing unprecedented levels of change in demand during this period. We are uniquely placed to listen to our multi-agency partners and provide support and advocacy to address these gaps, where appropriate. For services commissioned by the Wales Violence Prevention Unit, we are working with our partners to ensure, where possible, intervention work is moved online or via phone. Our providers are working tirelessly to prevent violence and protect those at risk, whilst also planning ahead to ensure programmes are able to resume as normal once the current legislation is lifted.
Information, guidance and evidence
The Wales VPU will act as an information hub for guidance, information and evidence relating to violence prevention, and will further develop opportunities for shared messaging, and distribution of resources among partners in the coming weeks.
The Journal of Community Safety and Well-being has published a paper by the Wales Violence Prevention Unit on how we have implemented a public health approach during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can read the article here.