A St. Louis-based crime victims' advocacy group alerted parents to remind their children that such vicious violence is rare and that they should not be afraid to go about their daily lives and familiar routines.
“Children should be taught to always be aware of their surroundings," said Julie Lawson, President and CEO of the Crime Victim Advocacy Center in St. Louis, in a statement. "But they also need to be reminded that this is an unusual situation and they should not fear going to school or other familiar activities.”
She was responding to news of the multiple deaths in Newtown, CT, on Friday, when a shooter .
"An incident like this reminds us that we are vulnerable to violence at any time,” Lawson said in the statement. She said it would not be unusual for parents and children to suffer from "vicarious trauma" — being afraid that the same thing will happen.
The Crime Victim Advocacy Center assisted more than 100 families of homicide victims in 2012. The organization says it helps "families in planning funerals, accessing funding for lost wages and medical bills, help victims communicate with law enforcement about details following homicide and provide counseling to families and witnesses free of charge."
For more information, contact 314-853-6063 or visit the organization's website.