Mental Health & Trauma Informed Practices

Many youth who are involved in the juvenile justice system have experienced significant trauma including neglect, abandonment, physical or sexual abuse, and varying degrees of family involvement in their lives. Because of the extensive neurological research regarding the adverse effects that childhood trauma can have on brain development, including its potential to increase a person’s risk for significant health and social problems later in life, many counties, including the Division of Juvenile Corrections, have moved towards becoming a more trauma-informed care (TIC) environment. Counties are working to develop a treatment culture that is responsive to trauma related needs by modifying policies and practices surrounding behavior modification programs, increasing family involvement in youth treatment, introducing sensory interventions and calm rooms, and providing a positive environment for youth to practice safe coping skills and work through challenging situations.