Philadelphia’s Institute for Safe Families Hosts Solution-Based Conference
Philadelphia’s Institute for Safe Families, in collaboration with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, hosted a National Summit on Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) on May 13-14 at the Independence Visitor Center. Key summit participants included Dr. Robert Anda, the Principal Investigator of the ACE study, Dr. Andrew Garner one of the authors of a pivotal policy statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics, Dr. Howard Spivak, Director of the Division of Violence Prevention for the Centers for Disease Control, Susan Dreyfus, CEO and President of the Alliance for Children and Families, Dr. Sandra Bloom, Co-Director of the Center for Non-violence and Social Justice and internationally recognized trauma expert and others.
“We are very excited to bring together, foster relationships and share results among national and local leaders committed to using the results of the ACEs study to create a paradigm shift with healthcare, mental health and child-serving systems,” said Martha Davis, Executive Director of the Institute for Safe Families.
The Philadelphia Urban ACE study is an effort to capitalize on the findings from the original ACE Study http://www.cdc.gov/ace/prevalence.htm , which examines a range of early childhood traumatic stressors and their relationship to clinical, public health, and social problems throughout the lifespan. The key concept underlying the ACE Study is that childhood experiences such as abuse, neglect, witnessing domestic violence, or growing up with alcohol/substance abuse, mental illness, parental discord, or crime in the home can lead to social, emotional, and cognitive impairments, increased risk of unhealthy behaviors, violence, victimization or re-victimization, disease, disability, and premature mortality. These adverse experiences cause chronic stress that may play a key role in racial and ethnic health disparities.