Violence is defined as “the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person, or against a group or community that either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment, or deprivation. This includes neglect and all types of physical, sexual and psychological abuse” (World Health Organisation). Family violence takes a variety of forms including the maltreatment of children, violence between intimate partners and the abuse of older adults.
“Violence is one of the biggest health issues facing individuals, families, and societies today. It is estimated that injury and violence contribute to 14.5 percent of the burden of disease in the developed world and 15.2 percent in the developing world. Violence is overtaking infectious diseases as a main cause of premature death worldwide” (Institute of Gender and Health, Canadian Institutes of Health Research).
The elimination of all forms of violence begins with prevention. For more information on Canada’s strategy for violence prevention, please visit the Family Violence Initiative (Public Health Agency of Canada).
What you will find
These resources provide Canadian and international information to help you plan public health programs in order to prevent violence that impacts all members of your community. Women, children, Aboriginal peoples, and seniors face heightened risk of violence. For more information, please visit the Best Practices section for interventions related to violence prevention.
A first step to planning a program to prevent violence is to understand the topic through surveillance data.
- Kiskisik Awasisak: Remember the children. Understanding the over-representation of First Nations children in the child welfare system (PDF document), Assembly of First Nations (2011).
- Interim report: Call into the night: An overview of violence against Aboriginal women (PDF document), House of Commons (2011).
- Violent victimization of Aboriginal people in the Canadian provinces, 2009, Statistics Canada (2011).
- Aboriginal women and family violence (PDF document), Public Health Agency of Canada (2008).
- Understanding family violence and sexual assault in the territories, First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples (PDF document), Department of Justice Canada (2008).
- Canadian incidence study of reported child abuse and neglect – 2008 (PDF document), Public Health Agency of Canada (2010).
- Parenting, school contexts and violent delinquency, Statistics Canada (2010).
- Self-reported violent delinquency and the influence of school, neighbourhood and student characteristics (PDF document), Statistics Canada (2009).
- Child and youth victims of police-reported violent crime, Statistics Canada (2008).
- Measuring violence against women: Statistical trends (PDF document), Statistics Canada (2013).
- Family violence in Canada: A statistical profile, 2011 (PDF document), Statistics Canada (2013).
- Gender differences in police-reported violent crime in Canada, 2008 (PDF document), Statistics Canada (2010).
- An estimation of the economic impact of spousal violence in Canada, 2009 (PDF document), Department of Justice.
- Police-reported dating violence in Canada, Statistics Canada (2008).
- Elder abuse and victimization, Statistics Canada.
- Elder abuse in Canada: A gender-based analysis—Summary, Public Health Agency of Canada.
- Transition home survey, one-day snapshot of women residing in shelters because of spousal abuse, Canada, provinces and territories. Statistics Canada (2013).
- Provincial studies of child abuse and neglect, Canadian Child Welfare Research Portal (2008).
- IHDA (Interactive Health Data Application) Data, Interactive Database. Government of Alberta.
- Alberta Children and Youth Services: Albertans’ perceptions of family violence and bullying survey 2014 (PDF document), Government of Alberta.
- Evidence review: Prevention of violence, abuse and neglect (PDF document), Ministry of Healthy Living and Sport (2010).
Prince Edward Island
- Taking stock of cyberbullying: A scan of the PEI context (PDF document), Government of Prince Edward Island (2014).
- Attitudinal survey on violence against women (PDF document), Province of New Brunswick (2009).
- Proportion des élèves victimes de violence à l’école ou sur le chemin de l’école ou de cyberintimidation durant l’année scolaire selon le sexe et le niveau scolaire, ensemble des élèves du secondaire, régions sociosanitaires et ensemble du Québec (French only). Statistics on the proportion of high school students (by grade and gender) who are victims of violence at school, on the way to school or through cyberbullying (total and by region). Government of Quebec (2013).
- Domestic violence in Australia—An overview of the issues, Parliament of Australia (2011).
- Interpersonal violence indicators, Ministry of Health.
- Progress for children: A report card on adolescents (PDF document), United Nations Children’s Fund (2012).
- Youth violence: National & State statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Youth risk behavior surveillance system: Violence and school violence, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2010).
World Health Organisation
- Global status report on violence prevention 2014 (PDF document) (2014).
- Elder abuse: Fact sheet (2014).
- Global and regional estimates of violence against women: Prevalence and health effects of intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence (2013).
- Violence against women, infographic (2013).
- World report on violence and health, a key report that has set the stage for violence prevention internationally (2002).
- FPT Justice Framework to Address Violence Against Indigenous Women and Girls (PDF document), Federal-Provincial-Territorial (FPT) Ministers Responsible for Justice and Public Safety, Government of Canada (2016).
- Action Plan to Address Family Violence and Violent Crimes Against Aboriginal Women and Girls (PDF document), Status of Women Canada, Government of Canada (2014).
- Ending violence against Aboriginal women and girls: Empowerment – a new beginning (PDF document), Report of the House of Commons Standing Committee on the Status of Women (2011).
- Aboriginal sexual violence action plan, Ontario Federation of Indian Friendship Centres (2011).
- Aboriginal affairs working group report to provincial and territorial Ministers of Aboriginal Affairs and National Aboriginal Organization leaders: A Framework for action in education, economic development and violence against Aboriginal women and girls (PDF document) (2010).
- Cyberbullying hurts: Respect for rights in the digital age (PDF document), Standing Senate Committee on Human Rights (2012).
- L’Allié: A multimodal approach to remedy behavioural problems and prevent violence in schools (PDF document), Public Safety Canada (2012).
- The sexual exploitation of children in Canada: The need for National action (PDF document), House of Commons Standing Senate Committee on Human Rights (2011).
- Abuse of older women (PDF document), Report of the Standing Committee on the Status of Women, House of Commons (2012).
- Life beyond shelter: Toward coordinated public policies for women’s safety and violence prevention (PDF document), YMCA Canada (2009).
- Alberta’s plan for promoting healthy relationships and preventing bullying (PDF document), Alberta Government (2015).
- Family violence hurts everyone: A Framework to end family violence in Alberta (PDF document), Government of Alberta (2013).
- Addressing elder abuse in Alberta: A strategy for collective action (PDF document), Government of Alberta (2010).
- Taking action on family violence and bullying: Report to Albertans 2008 (PDF document), Government of Alberta.
- British Columbia’s provincial domestic violence plan Parts 1 & 2, Provincial Office of Domestic Violence (2014).
- A framework for addressing violence against women in relationships: A supplement to the Public Health Core Program on prevention of violence, abuse and neglect, Ministry of Health (2012).
- Domestic violence prevention and reduction in British Columbia (2000-2010) (PDF document), Justice Institute of British Columbia (2011).
- Domestic violence response: A community framework for maximizing women’s safety (PDF document), Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General (2010).
- Manitoba’s multi-year domestic violence prevention strategy (PDF document), Government of Manitoba (2012).
- A better world for women: Moving forward 2005-2010 (PDF document), Government of New Brunswick.
Newfoundland & Labrador
- The violence prevention initiative, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.
- NWT family violence action plan: Phase II (2007-2012): Enhancing and expanding the system for families affected by family violence, Northwest Territories Health and Social Services (2009).
- Speak up: An action plan to address bullying and cyberbullying behaviour (PDF document), Government of Nova Scotia (2013).
- Domestic violence action plan (PDF document), Government of Nova Scotia (2010).
- 2013 Progress report: Ontario’s sexual violence action plan (PDF document), Ontario Women’s Directorate.
- Domestic violence action plan: Progress report (PDF document), Ontario Women’s Directorate (update 2012).
- Shaping a culture of respect in our schools: Promoting safe and healthy relationships: Safe schools action team report on gender-based violence, homophobia, sexual harassment, and inappropriate sexual behaviour in schools (PDF document), Ministry of Education (2008).
Prince Edward Island
- Premier’s Action Committee on Family Violence Prevention: Five year strategy (PDF document), Government of Prince Edward Island.
- Prévenir, dépister, contrer : Plan d’action gouvernemental 2012-2017 en matière de violence conjugale (PDF document) (French only). Government action plan to address domestic violence that includes measures of prevention and detection as well as psychological, correctional, judicial and police interventions. Government of Quebec (2012).
- Preventing violence among employees of the same work organization – Evaluation of a participatory intervention, Robert-Sauvé Institute of Occupational Health and Safety (2012).
- Plan d’action gouvernemental pour contrer la maltraitance envers les personnes aînées 2010-2015 (PDF document) (French only). Government action plan to tackle seniors abuse; the first part of the report covers the state of seniors abuse, and the second outlines governmental actions for prevention, screening and intervening. Ministry of Family and Seniors (2010).
- Saskatchewan’s action plan to address bullying and cyberbullying (PDF document), Government of Saskatchewan (2013).
- The future of evidence-based bullying and violence prevention in childhood and adolescence (PDF document), Standing Committee for the Social Sciences, European Science Foundation (2013).
- Engaging men to prevent gender-based violence: A multi-country and impact evaluation study (PDF document), United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women (2012).
- Women’s safety: A shared global concern: Compendium of practices and policies (PDF document), International Centre for the Prevention of Crime (2008).
- National safe schools framework (PDF document), Australian Government (updated 2013).
- The National plan to reduce violence against women and their children 2010 – 2022, Australian Government.
- Plan interministériel de lutte contre les violences faites aux femmes 2011-2013 (French only). Outlines action under three priorities namely protection, prevention and societal responsibility. Republic of France (2011).
Organization for Economic Collaboration and Development
- Transforming social institutions to prevent violence against women and girls and improve development outcomes (PDF document) (2013).
- Policy: Ending violence against women and girls in the UK, Home Office (2013).
- Protecting people, promoting health – A public health approach to violence prevention in England, Department of Health (2012).
- CDC special supplement: Interrupting child maltreatment across generations through safe, stable, nurturing relationships, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2013).
- Breaking the silence – Public health’s role in intimate partner violence prevention, video presentation, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2012).
World Health Organization (WHO)
- Violence prevention evidence base, Centre for Public Health at Liverpool John Moores University (a WHO Collaborating Centre for Violence Prevention).
- Preventing intimate partner and sexual violence against women: Taking action and generating evidence (PDF document) (2010).
- Violence prevention: The evidence, (2010).
- Basic recommendations for preventing violence in the workplace, Prevent Violence at Work.
- Intimate partner violence risk assessment tools (PDF document), Justice Canada (2012).
- Healthy relationships 101: An overview of school-based healthy relationship programs (PDF document), Canadian Women’s Foundation (2012).
- Guide to violence prevention in the work place (PDF document), Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (2010).
- Breaking the links between poverty and violence against women: A resource guide (PDF document), Public Health Agency of Canada (2008).
- Service provider screening guide for elder abuse (PDF document), Government of Alberta (2013).
- Facts on Elder Abuse (PDF document), Government of Canada (2013).
- Bullying prevention in sports (PDF document), Ministry of Education.
- Components of an effective bullying prevention approach (PDF document), Government of Alberta.
- Model core program paper: Prevention of violence, abuse and neglect (PDF document), Ministry of Health (2010).
- Joint prevention of workplace violence: Creating an innovative web‐based tool, Worksafe BC (2010).
Prince Edward Island
- Best practices for workplace promotion of violence prevention (PDF document), Premier’s Action Committee on Family Violence Prevention, Government of Prince Edward Island.
- Guide sur les droits des personnes face à l’homophobie en mileu de travail (PDF document) (French only). A guide to the workplace prevention of harassment and discrimination related to sexual orientation. Government of Quebec (2016).
- Public-Private partnerships and community safety: Guide to action, International Centre for the Prevention of Crime (2011).
- The safe schools toolkit, Australian Government.
- Measuring bullying: Victimization, perpetration, and bystander experiences: A compendium of assessment tools (PDF document), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (2011).
World Health Organization
Systematic Reviews of the Research from HealthEvidence.org:
- Effectiveness of home visiting in improving child health and reducing child maltreatment (2013).
- What works in youth violence prevention: A review of the literature (2013).
- Effectiveness of antibullying school programmes: A systematic review by evidence levels (2012).
- The evaluation of school-based violence prevention programs: A meta-analysis (2010).
- A systematic review of interventions for preventing adolescent intimate partner violence (2014).
- A systematic review of primary prevention strategies for sexual violence perpetration (2014).
- A systematic review of the effectiveness of interventions to prevent and respond to violence against persons with disabilities (2014).
- Interventions for preventing or reducing domestic violence against pregnant women (2013).
Search more systematic reviews.