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National Child Traumatic Stress Network e-Bulletin March 2014

New on the NCTSN Website 

New Military Families Product! 

The NCTSN is pleased to announce a new product for providers working with military families. Working Effectively with Military Families: 10 Key Concepts All Providers Should Know is now available. This brief tip sheet outlines the top ten things to keep in mind when working with military families and, for each key concept, includes links to additional information. 
 
 
The NCCTS Policy Program has released Effectively Communicating with Policymakers and Key Stakeholders about Child Trauma and the NCTSN: A Guide for NCTSN Members and Partners. This brief one-page factsheet offers strategies for fostering effective communication with stakeholders on such topics as identifying your social policy issues;  developing an effective change strategy; identifying your policymakers and scheduling meetings; appreciating the role of policy staff; and pre-, mid, and post-visit considerations.
 
 
The NCTSN childhood Traumatic Grief Committee has developed three new factsheets:
  1. Helping Military Children Grieve: Tip Sheet for Educators offers information on how children dealing with trauma and grief responses may feel and how you can help them. 
  2. Helping Children with Traumatic Grief outlines how children struggling with the death of someone close may feel and what you can do to help. 
  3. 10 Things a School-Age Child with Traumatic Grief Wants You to Know and How to Help gives ideas on what school-age children with traumatic grief may think and ways you can help. 

New Resource for Providers on Working with LGBTQ Youth

The NCTSN Child Sexual Abuse Collaborative Group has published a 7-page tip sheet which mental health practitioners will find invaluable in their work with LGBTQ youth. LGBTQ Youth and Sexual Abuse: Information for Mental Health Professionals provides a short glossary of relevant terms; a chart delineating the continuums of sex, gender, and sexual orientation; brief summaries of issues concerning LGBTQ youth and their parents related to sexual orientation and sexual abuse; a table of common myths and stereotypes about LGBTQ youth and sexual abuse; recommendations for practitioners and agencies on counseling LGBTQ youth; and guidance in treating LGBTQ youth following sexual abuse. 
 
  

Noteworthy Resources

The Battered Women's Justice Project will host a webinar Supporting Parents of Children Affected by Domestic Violence: Ten Important Topics on March 26, 2014 at 11:00-2:30pm PT. Drawing from the knowledge of domestic violence survivors, advocates, mental health clinicians, and research, the Domestic Violence Workgroup of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network has developed a series of 10 factsheets specifically for parents of children affected by domestic violence. Webinar presenters, who are members of the workgroup and authors of the fact sheets, have extensive experience working in a range of settings with children and families affected by domestic violence. 

 
 

 

 The American Psychological Association and the American Bar Association are hosting the conference Confronting Family and Community Violence: The Intersection of Law and Psychology in Washington DC on May 1-3, 2014. This 3-day APA/ABA continuing education national conference will address the broad range of issues related to violence in and around the home, community, and society. Psychologists, attorneys, judges, legal scholars, behavioral and social science scholars, social workers, and other professionals in legal, mental health, social service, and education fields can attend the nearly 40 plenary and invited sessions addressing family and community violence prevention and intervention. 

 
Recent Publications by Network Members, Affiliates, and Colleagues:
 
 Carly B. Dierkhising is among the authors of Victims Behind Bars: A Preliminary Study on Abuse During Juvenile Incarceration and Post-Release Social and Emotional Functioning in Psychology, Public Policy, and Law (available only online December 30, 2013). In their study of exposure to trauma during incarceration and outcomes following release, authors concluded that juvenile justice stakeholders should focus on preventing abuse during incarceration not only because abuse violates the civil and constitutional rights of youth, but also because it impacts their post-release functioning, resulting in increased criminal involvement and mental health problems. Hoping to provide support for continued system reform and a foundation for advocates to call for immediate action at the policy level, authors propose that future research replicate their findings in a large, diverse sample to continue to shed light on the experiences of abuse during incarceration and explore ways to improve safety in juvenile facilities. Authors further hope that conceptualizing these experiences as abuse allows for a shift in the perception of the problem, as nearly everyone in their study experienced some form of abuse during incarceration.
 
 
Authors Julie Kaplow, Kathryn Howell, and Christopher Layne in their article Do Circumstances of the Death Matter? Identifying Socioenvironemental Risks for Grief-Related Psychopathology in Bereaved Youth in the Journal of Traumatic Stress (Volume 27, Issue 1) examine potential links between parent and child reports of the cause of the death of a caregiver and their respective mental health problems, maladaptive grief reactions, posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS), and depression. Participants included 63 parentally bereaved children and 38 surviving caregivers who were assessed using self-report instruments and in-person interviews. Surviving caregivers reported the causes of death as resulting from sudden natural death (34.9%), illness (33.3%), accident (17.5%), and suicide (14.3%). Results revealed differences between caregiver-reported versus child-reported cause of death, particularly in cases of suicide. Children who lost a caregiver due to a prolonged illness exhibited higher levels of both maladaptive grief (d = 3.13) and posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS; d = 3.33) when compared to children who lost a caregiver due to sudden natural death (e.g., heart attack). In contrast, surviving caregivers did not differ in their levels of maladaptive grief and PTSS as a function of the cause of death; however, caregivers bereaved by sudden natural death reported higher levels of depression than those bereaved by prolonged illness (d = 1.36). Limited sample size prevented analysis of outcomes among those bereaved by suicide or accident. These findings suggest that anticipated deaths may contain etiologic risk factors for maladaptive grief and PTSS in children. 
 
 

New on the NCTSN Learning Center

Trauma-and Resilience-Informed Integrated Healthcare for Youth and Families
March 25, 2014 (9:20 am PDT)
Presenters: Moira Szilagyi, MD, PhD, American Academy of Pediatrics; Joshua Kaufman, LCSW, LA Unified School District, School Mental Health; Mark Rains, PhD, Pediatric Integrated Care Collaborative
The Trauma-Informed Integrated Healthcare Webinar Series is intended to lay the groundwork of fundamental knowledge about Integrated Health Care and how it relates to trauma, explore the opportunities and obstacles involved in integrating physical health, mental health, and trauma awareness and treatment into one setting, and describe some successful models of this integration as we move towards developing a better understanding of the most effective practices for trauma-informed integrated healthcare. 
 

Coming Next Month on our Learning Center

Developing Clinical Competence in Working with LGBTQ Youth and Families
April 7, 2014 (9:00 am PDT)
Presenters: Al Killen-Harvey, LCSW, Chadwick Center, The Harvey Institute; Sandra Soloski, MA, Persad Center; Presenter from Village Family Services
Presenters will outline how to work with LGBTQ youth and describe the clinical competencies needed to provide a safe space for LGTBQ youth who are dealing with trauma.  
 
Human Trafficking as it Intersects with Polyvictimization and Complex Trauma
April 10, 2014 (12:00 pm PT)
Presenter: Sujata Regina Swaroop, PsyD, The Trauma Center at JRI, Project Reach 
Presenter will discuss the complexities of human trafficking and how it transects with both polyvictimization and complex trauma, and how to serve survivors.  
 
Polyvictimization Speaker Series Summary
April 17, 2014 (12:00 pm PT)
Presenter: Regina Musicaro, The Trauma Center at JRI 
Presenter will review the various webinars within the Enhancing Multidisciplinary Responses to Polyvictimization: Complex Trauma Speaker Series and answer questions. 
 
Assessing Families' Needs and Strengths: Introduction to the FANS-Trauma
April 17, 2014 (9:00 am PT)
Presenters: Laurel Kiser, PhD, MBA, University of Maryland, School of Medicine; Kay Connors, MSW, University of Maryland, Schools of Social Work
Presenters will describe using the FANS-Trauma, how to assess a family's needs and strengths, and treatment planning upon completing the FANS-Trauma.  
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