Georgia: Empty parking lot for attached low brick buildings with green roofs.

For Kids Unsafe at Home, School Closure Increases Risk For Trauma

In January, Sharral Dean, a therapist at the Family Counseling Center of Central Georgia, was seeing about 30 young clients a week. At any given time, five to seven of them were what Dean calls “at risk” — more likely to experience violence at home, at higher risk for depression, anxiety, fighting in school and entering the juvenile justice system.

Chicago: silhouette of two friends sitting on the roof at sunset

Effects of Gun Violence Can Be Reduced in Youth, Chicago Program Shows

Concentrated gun violence results in lost population and economic power, increases trauma throughout communities and depresses school outcomes among students exposed to violence. Interventions deliberately designed to empower youth who are frequently exposed to community trauma are an important tool to break the cycle of violence that repeats far too frequently. 

Historic marquee of the Paramount Theater on Market Street in Newark, New Jersey.

Trauma for Youth Is Everywhere … But We Can Heal It in Newark

On a sunny afternoon in 2006, I was driving my four sons to a cookout in Newark, N.J., my hometown.
We had stopped at an intersection when a group of teenagers spilled into the street behind us. They were beating another young man, and it wasn’t a game. My sons started yelling, asking what was happening.

Only Death Ends the Rescue Fantasy — At First

From training to practicing to now teaching, one of the key factors in psychotherapy that continually surfaces is countertransference (sorry self-care), which we know as the phenomenon of the clinician reaction to the client. I prefer to think of countertransference as our “entanglement” with the client — it is never neat and organized. And I think a lot of managing entanglement starts with recognizing that fundamentally, clinicians are entangled with themselves and the stories we create for ourselves. So this is a story about the story about my entanglements.

We Need to Examine Why Many People Released From Prison Then Die Quickly

I remember every collapsing sensation in my body when I received the phone call notifying me of his death. I was 22, he was 23 — my boyfriend had died in a freak hiking accident. His loss was devastating to all of us who loved him. His loss was also tragic for the communities he could have continued to contribute to. The future potential of this young man was never fully realized. But I take comfort knowing that up until my boyfriend’s death, he was living freely, wildly and pursuing his dreams.

trauma: Flying bullet from light particles. Vector illustration

My Brother’s Use of Gun Created Lasting Childhood Wounds

When I first heard the topic was on guns, my initial response was I have zero experience with guns. Other than using a water gun at the local fair to win a prize, I never held a gun, shot a gun or even seen a real gun in person.

trauma: young guy is squatting in a corner, his arm supporting his head

Trauma-informed Care in Juvenile Detention Is Not Enough

While Florida has taken steps toward integrating trauma-informed practices in the juvenile justice system, the state needs to reconsider its treatment of youth. Notably, utilizing trauma-informed care in the juvenile justice system, while necessary, is not sufficient — prevention should be the goal, with trauma-informed services implemented in all child-involved systems. The state must also stop incarcerating children with adults and offer all juveniles in detention/incarceration access to trauma-informed services.

girls: young woman wrinkling forehead and pressing lips while looking downwards

Locking Up Girls Doesn’t Create Change, Research Does

For the past 30 years, I have worked with girls and young women throughout the state of Florida, and for six years I have led the Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center, which is a recognized leader in the advancement of the rights of girls, young women and youth who identify as female, especially those impacted by the justice system.