UNO Launches a Violence Prevention Program

Sep 28, 2012

Alegent Creighton Health and Omaha's Women’s Center for Advancement are bringing a community-based violence intervention program to UNO.

Nicole Naatz is a Licensed Mental Health Practitioner at UNO’s Counseling Center.  She says the university is trying to conduct 1 or 2 Green Dot training sessions per semester, with a graduate student who works specifically with the Green Dot program each year.  

Naatz says UNO held a training session over the summer with its Voices Against Violence Task Force.  The Green Dot program employs three strategies to prevent violence: direct, delegate and distract.

"A direct intervention or prevention would be I see a situation that’s not okay and I go up to the situation and check in with them and say, “I feel like things are getting a little out of hand” or, “I’m worried about what’s happening here.  Can I help you?  Is there something wrong?  A delegate would be I get someone else involved.  So maybe I don’t feel comfortable going up to that couple or those people so if I am a UNO student or faculty member, maybe I call UNO security.”

Naatz says distraction may mean an individual does something to divert attention away from the potentially violent situation, such as hitting the panic button on a key chain or dropping books nearby.  

Green Dot is also used at Creighton University.