This post was written by Angela Frazier, our Grants and Communications Coordinator.
It was only a year ago when Michael Brown, an 18 year old African American male was fatally shot by a white police officer. Many of us have seen heart breaking news footage of these cases time after time. It is hard enough to see it in the media but a completely different feeling to visit the location where a fatal shooting has taken place. November 2015 I built up the courage to visit Ferguson, Missouri. I wanted to see firsthand where this took place and allow myself to grieve the killing of another unarmed black male. Visiting Ferguson allowed me to do just that.
We are well aware of these incidents and how unarmed black men are not safe in their own communities. Unfortunately, this is similar to how domestic violence survivors aren’t safe within their own home. This has been some of the driving force of why I am so passionate about the work that I do here at Bradley Angle. I know that I am working for a nonprofit that is making a great impact in the domestic violence world. Everyday focusing on creating a community free of domestic violence.
As a result of visiting Ferguson, I have taken the time to read more about public health and its relation to police shootings. I came across an article, Police-related killings are countable public health data. An article that details public health issues and how police related killings need to be recognized as a public health concern.
Several instances of police violence over the past years in the U.S. are clear examples of law-enforcement-related harms to the public’s health. The goal of public health is to protect and improve the health of the entire population so why aren’t we recording police related killings in public health datasets?
Read more on Police-related killings are countable public health data here.