Observing Illinois’s Second Trauma-Informed Awareness Day – Health & Medicine Policy Research Group

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Observing Illinois’s Second Trauma-Informed Awareness Day

May 6, 2020

May 15th is Illinois’s second annual Trauma-Informed Awareness Day. Established by Illinois House and Senate resolutions in 2019, Trauma-Informed Awareness Day recognizes the impact of childhood adversity and highlights the importance of prevention, community resilience, and trauma-informed care. In addition to establishing Trauma-Informed Awareness Day, the resolutions promote two other important strategies: 1) that policy decisions enacted by the state legislature should take into account early childhood brain development and the concepts of toxic stress, early adversity, and buffering relationships, and 2) that officers, agencies, and employees of the State of Illinois whose responsibilities impact children and adults should learn about ACEs, toxic stress, and structural violence, as well as about trauma-informed care practices that promote healing and resiliency.

Trauma-Informed Awareness Day comes at a critical time for us as we experience the collective trauma of the COVID-19 pandemic. In this uncertain time, it is more important than ever to support each other and work together for a trauma-informed future. We hope you will join us in celebrating the work of our incredible community across the state. Here are some ways you and your organization can support Trauma-Informed Awareness Day on Friday, May 15:

  • Share on social media using #TraumaInformedIL—Sample posts and graphic can be found here.
  • Host a virtual screening of Resilience, Paper Tigers, or a great TEDTalk like The Science of Adversity and the Case for Systemic Empathy” with the Collaborative’s Stan Sonu or “How childhood trauma affects health across a lifetime” by Nadine Burke Harris.
  • Host a virtual book club event to discuss The Deepest Well, The Body Keeps the Score, or The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog.
  • Participate in the Collaborative’s virtual two-part training series. On May 13th, we are leading Trauma and Trauma-Informed Care 101 at 11am CDT. On May 15th, we will host our new Historical and Community Trauma: Connections to Current Outcomes training at 11am CDT. Registration and more information can be found here and here.
  • Deepen trauma-informed awareness among your networks! Here is a list of resources developed by the Collaborative and more are available here.
  • Not in Illinois? Contact your state legislators and tell them you want them to work towards a Trauma-Informed Awareness Day in your state. Use the language in our resolution as an example.

Is your organization marking the day with its own event or action? Tell us how here or email ssweetnam@hmprg.org, cthatcher@hmprg.org and we will share on our pages!