Prevention of urban violence

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The majority of the world's population live in poor cities. Cities are characterized by inequality across all parameters - security, income, education and health. The coexistence of wealth and poverty fuels violence and fear, especially the wealthy fear the poor. It helps to legitimize increasingly brutal forms of oppression of marginalized groups. Corruption and threats of violence as well as torture, inhumane treatment and other forms of organized violence play an integral part of life in poor urban areas.

DIGNITY collaborates with partner organizations in the South to develop their and our knowledge of how torture and organized violence can be reduced in large urban areas, and how to create safer living conditions without threats and fear.

We want to reduce the vulnerability under which poor villagers live. In collaboration with partner organizations and research we urge state and society to address the problem. These experiences are also used to develop interventions in Denmark in the direct work with torture survivors and other risk groups.

Finally, we use the accumulated knowledge to build and strengthen an emerging global coalition aimed at setting everyday violence – both state violence and non-state violence - on the anti-torture agenda and at strengthen the understanding of how violence interferes with international development initiatives.

Countries where we help prevent violence in urban areas:
Denmark, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Liberia, Kenya, South Africa, Uganda, Bangladesh, the Philippines & Congo

Related projects

Intersectoral urban violence prevention

This programme has a public health approach to torture and organized violence, and aims to provide security through cooperation between state and citizens. Urban areas with high rates of violence have many conflicts between the citizens and the state and much torture, but building trust between authorities and civil society enables us to prevent violence and thereby put torture and organized violence on the political map.

Torture and corruption

In this research project, we work to better understand and describe these mechanisms in poor urban areas in Sri Lanka, Kenya, Congo and South Africa.