OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy CEO Joe Dorman today praised the state Legislature for passing Senate Bill 1517, which creates a task force to make data-driven, results oriented policy recommendations regarding trauma-informed care.

Studies show that 45 percent of children in the United States have experienced at least one of the following Adverse Childhood Experiences: economic hardship, parental divorce or separation, parental death, parental incarceration, violence among adults in the home, victim of or witness to neighborhood violence, living with a mentally ill adult, or living with someone who has a substance use problem.

The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy has worked closely with the Potts Family Foundation and other partners to increase awareness among Oklahoma state legislators about the proven social impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences. An interim study was held at OICA’s request by the Oklahoma House of Representatives last summer that looked at the impact of traumatic experiences and how they can be addressed. 
Following that study, State Senator A.J. Griffin and House author Rep. Carol Bush filed SB 1517, creating a new task force on trauma-informed care. The bill has passed in both chambers and now heads to Governor Mary Fallin’s desk for her signature.
OICA CEO Joe Dorman praised Senator Griffin and the Legislature for passing the bill and asked Governor Mary Fallin to sign it.

“Too many Oklahoma children face adversity at a young age that continues to impact them for the rest of their lives,” said Dorman. “We can’t just ignore that trauma and expect these kids to grow into happy and healthy adults. We need to build policies that reflect an understanding of what they have gone through. That is the only way to break these cycles of poverty, abuse and other challenging circumstances.”