Childhood Trauma and LWOP

Adverse Childhood  Experiences (ACEs)


Childhood experiences, both positive and negative, have a tremendous impact on future violence victimization and perpetration, and lifelong health and opportunity. As such, early experiences are an important public health issue. Much of the foundational research in this area has been referred to as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs).


Click on this link for the CDC website on ACEs.


Click on this link for the article, "Adverse Childhood Experiences and Adult Criminality."





The Health and Social Impact of Growing Up With Alcohol Abuse and Related Adverse Childhood Experiences:

The Human and Economic Costs of the Status Quo


Robert Anda, MD, MS

Board of Scientific Advisors
National Association for Children of Alcoholics


Co-Principal Investigator
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study


The common stressful and traumatic exposures affecting the (neuro)development of our children are referred to herein as adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). Key among the constellation of these experiences is growing up in households affected by alcohol abuse. It also includes experiencing abuse (emotional, physical, sexual), or neglect (emotional, physical). Also in this constellation is witnessing domestic violence, and growing up with parental substance abuse, mental illness, discord, or crime in the home.

As a member of the Board of Scientific Advisors to the National Association for Children of Alcoholics, Dr. Anda was asked by NACoA’s Board of Directors to provide a perspective on what has been learned from the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study. This included the frequency, interrelatedness, and lifelong consequences of ACEs and an attempt to place the meaning of the findings from this Study into a broad, societal perspective.


 Click on this link to access the PDF from the National Association for Children of Alcoholics.

From trauma to incarceration: exploring the trajectory in a qualitative study in male prison inmates from north Queensland, Australia


Health & Justice 2016 4:3


There were approximately 34,000 prisoners incarcerated in Australian correctional centres as of 2014. The most common offence type for these prisoners was ‘acts intended to cause injury’, comprising 18 % of the total offences. Of the various risk factors for violent offending and incarceration identified in international research, trauma - either single events or ongoing; and substance abuse - which is commonly associated with violent behaviour across many cultures, are major contributors.


Click on this link to download a PDF of this article.


Child Trauma


The word trauma is used to describe negative events that are emotionally painful and that overwhelm a person’s ability to cope. Interpersonal or intentional trauma, such as childhood abuse or neglect, tends to have the most severe adverse psychological effects on children. Trauma can also occur when there is sexual abuse or psychological abuse.

Children can suffer trauma at any age as they are maturing and developing. However, early childhood trauma generally refers to the traumatic experiences that occur from birth up to age six. Because infants’ and young children’s reactions may be different from older children’s, and since they may not be able to verbalize their reactions to threatening or dangerous events, many people assume that young age protects children from the impact of traumatic experiences. On the contrary, a growing body of research has established that young children, even infants, may be affected by events that threaten their safety or the safety of their parents and caregivers.


Click on this link to access the website Crime Free Future.


Pipeline to Prison May Start with Childhood Trauma


January 6, 2016


Leah Bartos   -   California Health Report     


Pediatric patients giving their health histories at the Center for Youth Wellness, a health clinic in the impoverished Bayview Hunter’s Point area of San Francisco, are asked for more than the usual details about allergies and current prescriptions. Doctors there need a different kind of medical history: did their parents use drugs or have a mental illness? Were any family member in jail or prison? Have their parents divorced or separated? Have they suffered from physical, emotional or sexual abuse?


Click on this link for the California Health Report on this important topic.


The Road to Prison is Paved with Trauma for Women and Girls

Amie Newman April 7th 2016


The United States has the highest rate of incarcerated people in the world, according to Amnesty International. With less than 5 percent of the world’s population, the United States has almost 25 percent of the world’s total prison population. Since 1980, the number of people in prison has quadrupled to more than two million. We are living in an era of mass incarceration.

While the majority of prisoners are men, a report by the Center for American Progress on the state of women of color in the United States notes that it is women — disproportionately women of color — who are the fastest growing segment of the incarcerated population, increasing at nearly double the rate of men since 1985. African American women make up almost one-third of the female prison population and are incarcerated at three times the rate of white women. Hispanic women are incarcerated at 1.6 times the rate of white women.


Click on this link to read the entire article.


American Academy of Pediatrics



Adverse Childhood Experiences and the Lifelong Consequences of Trauma



Many people can identify a person in their lives who struggles with a chronic illness like heart disease, diabetes, or hypertension. Most people also know someone who struggles with mental illness, substance abuse, or relationships in general. Traditionally, the health care system would point to high-risk behaviors such as poor diet, drug use, or a sedentary lifestyle as the primary causal factors. Questions for patients have focused on “What’s wrong with you?” rather than “What happened to you?” A 1998 study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Kaiser Permanente is leading to a paradigm shift in the medical community’s approach to disease. This study of more than 17,000 middle-class Americans documented quite clearly that adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) can contribute

signicantly to negative adult physical and mental health outcomes and affect more than 60% of adults. This continues to be reaffirmed with more recent studies. 


Click on this link to access the ACP document on Adverse Childhood Experiences and the Lifelong Consequences of Trauma.