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What Our City Needs Episode 2: Mental Health & Philly’s Gun Violence

Trauma is a big contributing factor to to Philly's gun violence crisis among youth who feel they have nothing to lose.

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To date, there have been 1,969 shooting victims in Philadelphia and the city is looking to surpass last year’s 499 homicide rate, making it its deadliest year in history — especially for male youth of color. 

As of Nov. 12 of this year, 88% of all shooting victims were men, 85% were Black, and 52% were between the ages of 18 and 30.

AL DIA News’ “What Our City Needs” previously looked at the contributing legislative factors to this gun violence surge. But this issue goes far beyond what just politicians and those in government can do.

In “What Our City Needs Episode 2: Mental Health & Philly’s Gun Violence” AL DIA News talks to multiple people across the city who can attest to Philly’s gun violence’s relationship to trauma and mental health. 

These experienced individuals — either through living it or working with those that have — peel back how intergenerational trauma, community trauma, suppressed feelings, fear, masculinity, and hopelessness are all wrapped up together in the current gun violence crisis, pushing more and more of the city’s youth to get involved.

This article is part of Broke in Philly, a collaborative reporting project among more than 20 news organizations focused on economic mobility in Philadelphia. Read all of our reporting at brokeinphilly.org.

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