We’re pleased to share the latest SPARC brief, Implementing Trauma-Informed Practices in Child Welfare. Authored by Eva J. Klain and Amanda R. White, ABA Center on Children and the Law, this brief highlights the effects of trauma on child wellbeing and provides practice recommendations and examples of specific initiatives to guide transformation of the system.
According to the 2012 Report of the Attorney General’s National Task Force on Children Exposed to Violence, 46 million children living in the United States will have their lives affected by violence, crime, abuse, or psychological trauma this year. The Task Force recommends that every professional or advocate serving children exposed to violence and psychological trauma learn and provide trauma-informed care and trauma-focused services.
Child welfare system stakeholders, and the children and families they serve, can greatly benefit from integrating trauma knowledge into their policies and practices and thereby improve outcomes for abused and neglected children.
Trauma-specific interventions go beyond treating the symptoms of trauma, such as mental health disorders, and focus on the interplay between trauma and its consequences. This approach includes providing children with a sense of control and hope, and requires the involvement of all stakeholders working with the child, including caseworkers, lawyers, judges, providers, birth parents, and caregivers (foster parents and kinship caregivers). Such trauma-informed practices present an excellent opportunity for improving child welfare outcomes.
The brief can be downloaded here
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