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Preparing for a Trauma Consultation in Your Juvenile and Family Court

NCJ Number
Date Published
April 2015
29 pages
This guide assists judges and personnel of juvenile and family courts in deciding whether a trauma consultation is appropriate for their jurisdiction, and it outlines what courts can expect before, during, and after a trauma consultation.
The rationale for having a trauma consultation for a juvenile and family court stems from prevalence data that show a high percentage of those who come before juvenile and family courts have been exposed to severe and chronic traumatic events. These events often lead to symptoms and behaviors typically linked to traumatic stress. Because juvenile and family courts work with children and families that are dealing with trauma-related issues, they are in a unique position to promote healing and prevent future trauma. In 2013 the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) developed a court trauma consultation protocol in response to an increase in requests for assistance. At the time, there was no known protocol for conducting this type of consultation and subsequent technical assistance. The current manual was not developed with the intent to make it a "how to" guide for courts in conducting their own internal trauma consultations. This guide is intended to help jurisdictions and juvenile courts decide whether a consultation with an experienced, objective external team is right for them. It also assists jurisdictions and courts in preparing for the consultation team and in using subsequent recommendations of the team in implementing and maintaining trauma-informed services. 30 references and 15 resources listings

Date Published: April 1, 2015