‘My court date is next week’: How We Can Best Help Traumatized Youth in the Legal Sphere

'My court date is next week': How We Can Best Help Traumatized Youth in the Legal Sphere
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1Module 1
Recorded on: 2023-02-07
Unit 1Presentation Materials: 'My court date is next week': How We Can Best Help Traumatized Youth in the Legal Sphere
Unit 2Transcript: 'My court date is next week': How We Can Best Help Traumatized Youth in the Legal Sphere
Unit 3Workbook: 'My court date is next week': How We Can Best Help Traumatized Youth in the Legal Sphere
Unit 4Recording: 'My court date is next week': How We Can Best Help Traumatized Youth in the Legal Sphere

A trauma-informed approach is highly effective for justice-involved youths who can still change the trajectory of their lives to have better, more positive outcomes. But what does it mean to be trauma-informed? This webinar explores the trauma-informed framework fortified by an evidence-based approach when managing traumatized youth.

This session’s instructor is Dr. Michael Gomez, from the Emma Pendleton Bradley Hospital of the Warren Alpert School of Medicine at Brown University. Prior to this role, he served as the Director of the Adversity and Resilience Community Center (ARCC) in Texas and an Adjunct Professor at Texas Tech University.

Specifics of his presentation include:

  • What trauma-informed care is not: Identifying the mistakes Dr. Gomez did in the past as he managed traumatized youth.
  • A glimpse into what conventional trauma therapy looks like for kids and all the reasons why it is not effective.
  • The characteristics of effective therapy and what good trauma-informed therapy looks like based on the questions that it tries to address.
  • The misdiagnosis for other symptomology when healthcare providers miss the root cause which is trauma.
  • The components of good trauma therapy which incorporates assessment, psychoeducation, stress management, exploring trauma and inaccurate attributions, and caregiver inclusion.
  • A glimpse into the effective trauma assessment tools available.
  • The central role of caregivers in therapy for kids, who qualifies as caregivers, and how caregivers serve as the largest predictor of change for kids under therapy.
  • The ACEs Study
    • A brief history of the original research and its categories.
    • How the study annihilated the mind-body distinction and acknowledged the categories as a public health concern.
    • The findings that demonstrated the prevalence of ACEs, its impact on physical and mental health, and the outcomes that would disappear from society if ACEs ceased to exist.
    • A framework that showed how ACEs negatively impact health and well-being throughout the lifespan.
    • Understanding that despite ACEs influencing individuals’ outcomes, trajectory is not destiny and trajectory can be changed, particularly for youths.
    • A small-scale replication of the ACEs study that illustrated very similar outcomes as the original study itself and its correlation to trauma and secondary trauma.
  • The National Child Traumatic Stress Network’s (NCTSN) mission to improve the standard of care and access to services through initiatives and resources that advocate a trauma-informed approach.
  • NCTSN’s Think Trauma training resources available to help any agency successfully implement and facilitate the training.
  • A rundown of the Think Trauma modules’ scope and components.
    • Trauma and justice involvement that focuses on the fractured system, distinguishing PTSD from complex trauma, making a difference within one’s purview, and how trauma is treatable.
    • Trauma’s impact on development which unpacks the neurobiology of trauma in children and the value of rapport in reversing the effects of trauma.
    • Trauma in context and coping that demonstrate how historical and intergenerational trauma plays out and what it looks like and the evidence-based treatments required to manage these.
    • Trauma and staff wellness that highlights the importance of self-care to prevent and mitigate burnout and secondary trauma for those working with traumatized youth.
  • The Standard Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy (TF-CBT) and the Complex Trauma TF-CBT Models and its different phases.
    • An overview of the overarching presence of parents and caregivers in the models.
    • How trauma isn’t addressed during therapy until appropriate stabilization and coping skills are first provided.

Questions raised by webinar participants are on…

  • The value of the therapist and client-therapist relationship in the effectiveness of evidence-based approaches.
  • Workarounds when trauma-informed child therapists are not available in rural areas.
  • Easily implementable first step to adopt a trauma-informed approach.
  • Resources mentioned in the webinar.
  • The use of child-focused language and cognitive-friendly materials.


Other Webinars with this Presenter



Or click here to view and register for other upcoming Victim Assistance webinars and recordings on the JCH Platform.


Resources and Handouts


Audience Comments

  • “Dr. Gomez is able to explain complex terms in simple terms. He is an excellent speaker and makes the information relatable and rememberable. Thank you!” — Allison
  • “The presenter held my attention as he had a great sense of humor. I gained some insight into the different types of trauma and also what questions not to ask.” — STREEKS
  • “The ACES overview was helpful, as was hearing about specific cases. The Dr. was very easy to listen to and kept me engaged. I’d love to see a progression of trauma topics covered.” — Elizabeth
  • “Absolutely excellent presentation. Great, accessible training delivered in an approachable manner. Really enjoyed both the topic and the presentation. Thank you!” — Emily
  • “Everything Dr. Gomez says is gold – thank you so much for continued access to him.” — Jennie
  • “Dr. Michael Gomez makes things interesting and talks about things a normal person can understand. I love that even though we are training and learning a lot he makes people laugh.” — Nicole
  • “I loved the energy and passion from the speaker! Also loved the links to resources. Something that stuck out to me was that the best therapeutic outcomes come when the caregiver also participates- seems obvious but I don’t think of it that way all the time!” — Amy





NACP and D-SAACP Advocates can earn 1 CEU by attending this webinar through the National Advocate Credentialing Program (NACP)® and the DoD Sexual Assault Advocate Certification Program (D-SAACP). Founded in 1975, the National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA) is the oldest national victim assistance organization of its type in the United States and is the recognized leader in victim advocacy, education and credentialing.  To learn more about NOVA, visit trynova.org.





Additional Resources
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Thoughts about Trajectory and Destiny from Michael Gomez
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