By Joe Dorman, The Duncan Banner, January 15, 2020
The latest report from America’s Health Rankings shows a slight improvement in Oklahoma on a critical child wellbeing area, Adverse Childhood Experiences also called ACEs. Sadly, Oklahoma is still the worst in the nation in the frequency of Adverse Childhood Experiences among our children, but awareness is making a difference.
The study examined the percentage of children ages 0-17 who endured two or more of the following ACEs: economic hardship; parental divorce or separation; living with someone who had an alcohol or drug problem; neighborhood violence victim or witness; living with someone who was mentally ill, suicidal or severely depressed; domestic violence witness; parent served jail time; being treated or judged unfairly due to race/ethnicity; or death of parent (2-year estimate).
The reports shows that the national average of 20.5% endured ACEs, which is a slight decrease from recent years. In Oklahoma, 28.5% of our youth have two or more of these toxic, long-term experiences. The good news is the number is down from 32% in recent research.