As pandemic eases, US faces rise in mass shootings

As the pandemic eases and gun violence is on the rise in the US, a workplace safety expert who leads training in active shooter response and a trauma psychiatrist who counsels survivors of violent incidents say their services are again in demand. (May 4)

Video Transcript

KERRY HARRIS: There'll be nothing wrong with just making a hole mountain of chairs that he wouldn't be able to push in through here. I'm one of the partners of National Violent Intruder Preparedness Solutions. We're a nonprofit that works around the country providing this training, active shooter training. Again, this would not come open. Obviously, during the COVID pandemic when it was at its peak, there was really not much in the way of happening, thankfully, in terms of active shooter events. Sadly, very sadly, in the last few weeks of course, we've had a whole series of them.

Spray him with pyro-chem right in the eyes, and then I'm going to whale on him. We really feel it's equally important to prepare organizations to prevent these things from happening, and then if they do happen, what to do.

SARAH STEL: We recognize that no organization is exempt from the threat of potential violence. And we found it very important that our staff is trained so they can protect themselves and also protect the residents.

SHAUNA SPRINGER: I've responded to a few events here in California and elsewhere when there have been these sudden unpredictable tragic events, and really helped survivors of these events walk through that really painful process. We're suddenly starting to reemerge as the vaccine gets around. And we want to come back into a world that's safe.

And so the timing of all of these mass violent events, I mean, it's hard any time, right? But it's really unfortunate timing. We think about the statistics, and is it likely to happen, and somehow that doesn't really translate to a felt sense of safety, especially when there's been such a back to back surge of these kinds of violent events. I do know that we have a national mental health crisis. And if we don't address it, we're going to continue to see tragic senseless acts of violence and other adverse outcomes, including many more suicides to kind of continue.