Cicchetti and CCR team​ help develop the Trauma-Informed Care for Children and Families Act

With the support and clinical guidance of Colleen Cicchetti, PhD, and the Center for Childhood Resilience (CCR) team, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin and U.S. Representative Danny Davis unveiled the Trauma-Informed Care for Children and Families Act​, which is designed to address the toxic stress and trauma that impacts many children from Chicago’s most violent neighborhoods. This Act seeks to reach kids where they are – schools, at home, health and social service providers, and after-school programs, among other locations. The bill would equip teachers, doctors and other adults serving children to recognize the signs of trauma, weave this knowledge into their practice, and make the policy changes and workforce investments needed to provide support to those who need it. To achieve this, Durbin and Davis’ legislation would:

  • Provide more teachers, doctors, social service providers and first responders with the resources necessary to help children who have experienced trauma by allowing funding for more than two dozen federal grant programs to be used for this training. Funding streams include Head Start, formula funding for public schools, social services, health care, child welfare, home visiting for parents with at-risk children, among others;
  • Expand Medicaid coverage for child trauma services, increase mental health care in schools, and enlist trained mentors and community leaders to help;
  • Expand loan repayment and graduate school behavioral health training programs to increase the number of clinicians in our communities, and enhance teacher-training programs;
  • Create a large grant program to bring together stakeholders to identify needs, collect data, and target efforts. It also allows communities to pool federal grants from multiple agencies and focus the funding on increasing trauma services for children;
  • Create a federal task force to recommend improvements for identifying, referring and supporting children and families that have experienced trauma.