The New York Times blog Well, features a December 31, 2010 post entitled Four Adopted Siblings, Lots of Holiday Stress wherein Dr. Joshua Sparrow offers advice to families with adopted or foster children on how to handle the excitement and stress of the holiday season. His view on the role of prior trauma in shaping responses to a season that is assumed to be one of only happy experiences for children is especially helpful for parents and professionals alike.
A policy brief from the Justice Policy Institute (JPI) explores the complex relationship between childhood trauma and justice system involvement and suggests that more and better early intervention efforts may be required to better serve at-risk children.
According to the report, Healing Invisible Wounds: Why Investing in Trauma-Informed Care for Children Makes Sense, out of the 93,000+ children incarcerated in America, between 75 and 93 percent report at least one traumatic experience in the lives (such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, war, neglect and maltreatment, violence).
The brief examines the effects of trauma on youth and how said effects may influence delinquency. Some highlights from the brief include:
- Traumatic experiences can affect the brain development of children.
- Children who have has traumatic experiences have disproportionate contact with the juvenile justice system.
- The juvenile justice system in America does not adequately address the needs of children who have experienced trauma.
The report is available for download at the Justice Policy Institute website.