Photo caption and credit: Frank Kros, President of the Kros Learning Group, explains The N.E.A.R. Science to the group. The Maryland General Assembly held an event to inform them about how to make trauma informed policy decisions, and informing them about the consequences of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES). (Paul W. Gillespie)
If adverse childhood experiences were eliminated entirely, rates of depression could plummet, heart disease and obesity could become less prominent, and smoking and heavy drinking could decline, Melissa Merrick, president and CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America, told Maryland lawmakers Friday morning.
Gathered ahead of the upcoming session for a day-long conference on how Adverse Childhood Experiences, or ACEs, can have lasting impacts on individuals and communities, nine Maryland legislators, including Del. Alice Cain, D-Annapolis, learned about how policy can help.
“I thought it was phenomenal,” Cain said. “I’m thrilled this issue is getting the attention that it deserves."
Cain said she’s already requested organizers come to the statehouse during the legislative session to ensure more lawmakers get the message.
She serves on the Education subcommittee of the Ways and Means Committee, and she said it became apparent to her that teachers are not being adequately prepared to deal with the trauma students bring into the classroom.
Del. C.T. Wilson, D-Charles County, who previously testified during a Senate committee hearing about his own experience of being abused as a child, attended the event. He said he wished he was joined by more of his colleagues.
To read the entire Dec. 14 article by Olivia Sanchez, click here.