Rationale: Violence is a social and economic problem for all nations
Violence undermines the social and economic conditions of communities and nations. It endangers healthy and sustainable development by causing community decay, destabilising national labour and industry, discouraging investment and tourism, threatening the quality of life and contributing to the emigration of skilled citizens. (4) Governments spend a significant proportion of public funds responding to violence, often at the expense of other services, including criminal justice, police, education and health services. Violence also disrupts the provision of basic social services and the delivery of curative and preventative health care.(4)
Finally, as an expression of power, violence exacerbates gender and social inequity. An analysis in the World Bank's World Development Report 1993 concluded that between 5 and 16 percent of the healthy years of life lost to women of reproductive age can be linked to gender-based victimisation, rape and domestic violence. The Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women describes violence against women as "an obstacle to the achievement of equality, development and peace."
Thus, preventing youth violence is not only a sound investment for the future of individuals, but also a prerequisite for the development and maintenance of healthy societal development.(12)
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