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Health & Science

MetroHealth to Provide Trauma Counseling for Individuals in Cuyahoga County Gun Court

A photo of MetroHealth main campus
MetroHealth's program is the first in the nation that addresses the relationship between trauma and gun violence.

Gun violence prevention is more than just enforcing gun laws; it’s also community and mental health support. That’s why MetroHealth will be providing trauma counseling for people on the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Violence Intervention Docket, or more commonly known as gun court.

The court works with individuals caught carrying an illegal firearm while committing a non-violent crime. Director of Trauma Recovery Services Sarah Hendrickson says they are looking to understand why these people feel unsafe in their environments.

“We want to address and understand what those reasons are and then help identify the resources and the services that assist, while addressing the impact trauma has on and in their life," Hendrickson said.

The program isn't about taking people's guns away but identifying the reasons why they feel the need to have one. This is the first program in the nation that addresses the relationship between trauma and gun violence.

“Most people aren’t setting out to commit a crime. They’re setting out to protect themselves from the environments that they’re in and the potential harm that they see daily and/or have felt historically," Hendrickson said.

Over the next three years, MetroHealth hopes to provide support for more than 150 people.