Trauma Mitigation for Police and the Policed

Trauma Mitigation for Police and the Policed
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1Module 1
Recorded on: 2022-03-22
Unit 1Slide Deck: Trauma Mitigation for Police and the Policed
Unit 2Transcript: Trauma Mitigation for Police and the Policed
Unit 3Workbook: Trauma Mitigation for Police and the Policed
Unit 4Recording: Trauma Mitigation for Police and the Policed

Numerous studies have corroborated the fact that those working in the criminal justice system, public safety, and other helping professions have some of the highest levels of career-related stress. The very nature of these careers expose them, as well as the people with justice system involvement, to trauma which has lifelong consequences. This webinar provides an understanding of trauma and guidelines to mitigate it.

This session’s instructors are Katharine Manning and Terry Clark. Katherine is the author of the book The Empathetic Workplace and the president of Blackbird DC. She works on issues of trauma and victimization and advised and guided the Justice Department’s response to victims of terrorism, large-scale financial fraud, and child exploitation. Meanwhile, Terry Clark work as a federal agent for 24 years and is currently a Precision Wellness Coach helping individuals in organizations to reach their full potential and achieve their best life.

Specifics of this discussion include:

  • What trauma is, a glimpse into the trauma experience, its different causes, and key elements when interacting with people in trauma.
  • Statistics illustrating the prevalence of trauma particularly with segments involved in the criminal justice system as victims or offenders and those in impoverished communities.
  • Understanding trauma from a neurobiological standpoint by looking into how the brain processes threats and how it results in the traumatic response.
  • The different ways the trauma response may unfold depending on the experiences and environment an individual is exposed to.
  • How human’s ability for empathy gives rise to the concept of vicarious trauma for those who interact with individuals in trauma or are exposed to details of traumatic events.
  • Ways that trauma influences an individual’s decision-making and consequently, the capacity to manage others who are experiencing stress and trauma.
  • Trauma mitigation methods that we may employ to better support others.
    • Building trust with the person suffering from trauma by offering transparency, clarity, consistency, and choices during interactions.
    • Practicing active listening by asking open-ended questions, being mindful of body language, looping, and clarifying throughout the conversation to prompt others to share more.
    • Acknowledging when people open up and share things to communicate that their feelings are valid and that they’re being listened to before going straight to the solutions.
    • Guidelines on how to effectively share information by using short and clear sentences, repetition, and following up in writing to ensure access to resources that address their concerns.
  • Controlling our own response to traumatic incidents and vicarious trauma through breathing exercises, naming our emotions, engaging our senses, and taking proactive breaks to maintain calm and equilibrium.
  • An overview of how those in the criminal justice system and helping professions are exposed to trauma and how it adversely impacts their health.
  • The concept of epigenetics which explains how our lifestyle choices and practices can influence our body’s health and wellness.
  • Defining mindfulness, how it is applied within the context of policing, and the origins of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction method.
  • Rundown of the research-proven benefits of meditation on our physical, cognitive, mental, and psychological health, as well as our happiness, relationships, and resiliency.
  • The value of a mindfulness practice based on the health conditions that law enforcement professionals tend to experience as a result of the demands of the job.
  • An experiential learning activity through a guided meditation that includes breathwork, awareness, and visualization.
  • Common challenges people experience when meditating and how it can affect our mood and thoughts.
  • The different types of meditation practiced through Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction.
  • The common benefits of mindfulness and how it lessens the triggers and reset the biological outcomes brought about by hyper-vigilance.
  • Questions from the webinar attendees are about the stigma that comes with seeking help in the law enforcement profession and the different types of threats that the amygdala responds to.



Other Webinars with this Presenter


Resources and Handouts


Audience Comments

  • “I didn’t want this Webinar to end! Great information! Thank you for sharing!” — Kara
  • “The practices that help us ground/regulate ourselves when our bodies/minds are in stress response is most valuable. Especially helpful was Dr. Manning’s description of the neuroscience of trauma and stress-response. I would like to learn group processes/practices to build trust, safe connections for small groups, both in the workplace and externally in the community.” — Rod
  • “Best webinar I have attended so far! Trauma presentation as well as guided meditation and plain language made for a really enjoyable presentation!” — Erik
  • “I absolutely loved the tips and tricks given on this website. I am getting ready to apply to try and be a dispatch supervisor and I think the breathing techniques and whatnot would help a lot in dealing with some of the generational differences in our center.” — Shannon
  • “This was a really great webinar. It’s such a big need in the LE field and for humans in general. Thank you, this has been very helpful.” — Alicia
  • “I really felt the mindfulness activities were beneficial because I cannot only use that with my clients but also myself.” — Tatum







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




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