A traumatic event such as a shooting, hate crime, or a natural disaster can happen in any community and experiencing these events can have a lasting impact on an individual and community's wellbeing.
The Community Safety Program supports community-led approaches to safety and provides trainings on how to respond to and prepare for traumatic events. To request our training please fill out our online form here.
What is a Traumatic Event?
Any incident experienced by a person that is perceived to be shocking, distressing, or harmful, such as a shooting, witnessing violence, traffic accident, severe weather event, etc.
Many of us can experience a wide range of physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral responses after a traumatic incident. Responses can be immediate or delayed, brief or prolonged and can vary for each person depending on their lived experience, health, culture, supports, coping styles, etc. Importantly, there are options that can help with coping and recovering from trauma as a survivor, witness, responder, upstander, friend & family, and as a community.
Coping strategies include preparation, self & community care, and identifying support systems.
Community Care Response
In situations of violence or a crisis, we may experience the loss of our sense of safety and in some instances our public trust. The trauma and grief of community violence can be experienced by all involved. Allowing for collective healing when needed and having access to appropriate supports is important for community resiliency.
Community Safety Services
The Community Safety Program supports community-led approaches to safety and provides no-cost trainings to community members that will help communities stay safe, connected, and build resiliency. Below are topics our Community Safety team can organize trainings around. If you are interested in scheduling a training please fill out this quick online form.
Organizing support for communities that want to come together after a traumatic event. For example: getting to know each other; to honoring the lives of victims and grieve in a way that will help everyone in the community recover; or to accessing our other Community Safety services.
Connecting to a trained trauma intervention volunteer who can provide emotional aid and practical support and resources to survivors of traumatic events and their families in the first few hours following a tragedy. These services are available in 9 different languages.
Crime prevention through environmental design (CPTED). This includes placemaking or design methods that result in safer spaces where all communities can ultimately heal and thrive. Support with co-creating solutions for a site, such as adding the right type of lighting, help with connecting to resources for a mural or block event.
Personal safety training provides tools to feel empowered and confident in having helpful dialogue and avoid and address situations that feel unsafe. This includes de-escalation tips and understanding personal bias.
Connecting with the Neighborhood Emergency Teams (NETs). These trained volunteers provide emergency disaster assistance in your neighborhood.
Training on resiliency and emergency preparedness. This training is offered jointly with the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management (PBEM) and helps community learn how to prepare for emergencies, disasters, and seasonal hazards.
Facilitating productive conversations to stay connected with each other and reduce the effects of social isolation with wellness tips and resources especially during a pandemic.
Creating pedestrian safety training will teach pedestrian responsibilities and your responsibilities as a driver to decrease pedestrian and active transportation fatalities and serious injuries.
The tools Community Safety can offer are not all we may need to help cope with and heal from community violence or traumatic incidents. It’s important to know that there is a diversity of resources to support ourselves and each other through difficult times.
Local trauma-informed care resources: here.
General Community Safety Resources: here.
Lines for Life’sline for racial equity support for Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC): Counselors available M-F from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm at 503-575-3764. You can find their website here.
The Multnomah County Crisis Line: 503-988-4888 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week). Interpretation services available.
SAMHSA’s Disaster Distress Helpline: 1-800-985-5990 or text “TalkWithUs” to 66746 (24/7, 365-day-a-year) crisis counseling and support for people experiencing emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters.
Trauma Intervention Program Northwest’s (TIP) Line: 503-940-7997 (24/7) Information and referral to help emotionally traumatized individuals.
List of NET volunteers that are active in Portland can be found here.
Resources for People who Have Experienced a Traumatic Event
Safe +Strong Oregon Community Care Guide can be found here.
The Trauma Intervention Program Northwest’s Resource Guide can be found here.
NAMI’s Tools for Managing Traumatic Stress can be found here.
National Institute of Mental Health’s Coping with Traumatic Events can be found here.