“To ignore the impact of the adversity and trauma caused by ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences) on our community is to place our community in peril of long-term dysfunction that saps our vitality and quality of life. To confront this epidemic requires that we address the problem by intervening differently. We must work steadily and gradually towards becoming a trauma-informed community and developing trauma-informed solutions in all businesses, health care organizations, courts, local and state governments, etc. to stop the severe problems we have in our communities. This will need to be incremental and intentional and we, fortunately, have proven models available.”Ellen G. Smith, MD
The “Case Statement for Trauma-Informed Approaches” provides an overview of the issue and typical outcomes from ACEs. It includes a robust review of the literature quantifying the effects of ACEs across the community, including, but not limited to, education, the opioid and suicide epidemics, the legal system, businesses and the mental and physical health care of the community. Additionally, the costly economic effects of adversity are also outlined. Fortunately, there is plenty of research to support various solutions to this serious problem, and two are explored here: trauma-informed approaches and self-healing community work, including information about their levels of effectiveness in improving the outcomes in our communities.
“If we don’t recognize this problem and its severity, we cannot move forward. We must come together to solve this problem!”