Violence Prevention

Improving Health by Promoting Peace

The Chicago Department of Public Health established the Office of Violence Prevention (OVP) in 1994 following the Surgeon General declaration of violence as a public health epidemic.

OVP works to prevent violence across the lifespan and reduce its negative impacts when it does occur. We understand violence to be anything that hurts or destroys any person, place or thing. We believe that exposure to violence in the home and/or community can change the life of a child forever.

We believe that exposure to violence in the home and/or community can change the life of a child forever "Children See..Children Do" .

We believe in primary prevention-preventing violence from happening in the first place by increasing awareness, identifying alternatives, responding early, surrounding children with protection, building on strengths, supporting parents and caregivers, strengthening community connections and working towards a culture of peace and justice.


The CDPH Office of Violence Prevention and Behavioral Health (OVPBH) is responsible for:

  • Promoting health equity, wellness, and public health data literacy
  • Connecting community provider and system partners
  • Advancing effective policy and systems’ change, and
  • Managing violence, metal health, and substance use initiatives across the spectrum of prevention, intervention, trauma-informed response and resilience.
  • The work of the Office of Violence Prevention focuses on:
  • Teaching - through violence prevention community education workshops and professional development training
  • Strengthening Systems - working with national, state, city and community groups to apply a violence prevention lens to the work they do
  • Reaching Community Partners - EVERYONE has a role to play in violence prevention!



ReCAST Learning Institute


Restorative Practices

Mental Health Services for Children and Adolescent Victims of Sexual Assault (MHCSA)

Chicago Dating Matters

Crisis Intervention Pilot Program

Crisis Response and Recovery

Resiliency in Communities After Stress and Trauma

Substance Use Programs

Service Facts

I Want To