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Group Advocating For Creation Of ‘Trauma-Informed’ Legislation In Sacramento

Group Advocating For Creation Of "Trauma-Informed" Legislation In Sacramento


Ted Lempert, president, Children Now


Could state policies be improved by a greater understanding of the lingering effects of childhood trauma? That's the case that social workers and psychologists will be making to California legislators Tuesday as part a policymaker education day.

The California Campaign to Combat Childhood Adversity wants lawmakers to learn about the effects of toxic stress resulting from childhood trauma, which they say can influence everything from health care to the economy.

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"California's children are in trouble: more than 1.5 million have had two or more adverse childhood experiences, which can lead to severe physical, emotional and educational problems for them down the road, and exact a heavy price on our communities and our economy," Children Now president Ted Lempert said in a news release.

The campaign points to research that shows people who are exposed to trauma during childhood have poor health outcomes and shorter life expectancy.

The Adverse Childhood Experiences study, led by San Diego physician Vincent Felitti, looked at 10 categories including major physical, sexual and emotional abuse, emotional and physical neglect and household dysfunction including domestic violence and mental illness.

According to the study, exposure to as few as three of these categories during childhood could put a person at risk for heart disease, emphysema, cancer, auto-immune disease and other disease.

Lempert joined Midday Edition on Tuesday to talk about how childhood trauma affects California communities.

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