Mass Violence Advisory Initiative

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Mass Violence Advisory Initiative

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Recognizing that incidents of mass violence present a myriad of unique challenges to law enforcement leaders while under intense pressure, the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) and the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) have partnered to launch the Mass Violence Advisory Initiative (MVAI). This initiative will help provide peer-to-peer assistance for law enforcement leaders at the onset of a mass violence event to maximize the safety and wellness of officers, other first responders, and the community. The MVAI will advise these groups by sharing promising practices for communicating with community members and the media and connecting law enforcement leaders with local, state, and federal partners. The initiative will also address agency, victim, and survivor’s mental wellbeing.

Examples of acts of mass violence include:

  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute campus shooting in 2007
  • Aurora, Colorado, movie theater shooting in 2012
  • Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newton, Connecticut, shooting in 2012
  • Pulse Night Club, Orlando, Florida, shooting in 2016
  • Tree of Life Synagogue, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, shooting in 2018
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These events can cause deep and long-lasting trauma to families, first responders, and community members. The IACP recognizes that due to the complex, unique, and urgent nature of these events, law enforcement leaders responding to mass violence incidents will benefit from the knowledge of other law enforcement personnel who have experienced a similar incident.

Mass Violence Peer-to-Peer Advisory Team

Upon request, the IACP’s Mass Violence Peer-to-Peer Advisory Team will deploy subject matter experts (SMEs), virtually and in-person, to provide assistance to law enforcement leaders when a mass violence incident occurs. These SMEs include individuals from different vocations who have first-hand experience guiding law enforcement agencies and communities through similar tragedies. Mass Violence Peer-to-Peer Advisory Team personnel will remain in contact and provide guidance in the months following an incident, ensuring that law enforcement leaders have the tools and information they need to help first responders and communities heal. The IACP will provide these services at no cost to the agency in need. 

If you are interested in participating as an SME for this initiative, please fill out this form.

Contact Information

Contact us at MVAI@theiacp.org for additional information or to request assistance.

This project is supported by Cooperative Agreement No. 2020-DP-BX-K012 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions contained herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. References to specific agencies, companies, products, or services should not be considered an endorsement by the author(s) or the U.S. Department of Justice. Rather, the references are illustrations to supplement discussion of the issues.

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