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Taking an ACEs History -- Who's Doing It and How?

If you're doing ACEs histories, please do a short blog post or contact one of the community managers so that we can do so for you.

Screening for ACEs- Juvenile Probation

Currently the court I work in rural, Northern Michigan we are screening all youth in the county I work who enter the justice system. They are screened for ACEs in the pre-disposition phase. This is the same time they are screened for substance abuse issues, mental health issues, risk, etc. Any youth who scores a four or higher is considered a candidate to be sent to a new children's trauma center which recently opened in our community. Those with an ACE lower than a four may still be referred based on the outcomes from the other screenings completed.

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Hello Dr. Anthofer-Fialon,

Thank you for incorporating the ACEs screening into your work at the 13th Circuit Court here in Michigan.  

In my opinion, when any court in America identifies the ACE entitled "Divorce/Separation from a Biological Parent" , they should swiftly and clearly intervene to help that person protect their known legal rights or help them  establish court ordered custody/parenting time rights. Teaching more 'coping skills' will not help eliminate the real life problems in the home such as legal/human rights violations, parental betrayal, abuse/neglect, and social injustice. 

This would help systematically address ACEs in real-time to help alleviate some of the day to day toxic stress for both the child(ren) and their parents.

When our systems of care (including the courts) are "required" to make these types of linkages in response to an ACEs screening, we should be able to start lessening the number of adults in America trying to 'cope' with their adverse childhood experiences. We should be focusing first on the actionable items, then we can move on to coping skills for the other identified ACEs.

Please consider posting a short explanation of the 13th Circuit Court's current standard operating procedure when you identify "Divorce/Separation from a Biological Parent" during an ACEs Screening. 

[Question #1]: As a circuit court employee in Michigan, are you clearly required to identify all current court ordered legal rights associated with any of the identified ACEs including "Divorce/Separation from a Biological Parent"?

James Gallant, Marquette County Suicide Prevention Coalition (906) 360-3045  (email):

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