Trauma-Informed Systems

A trauma-informed approach can be implemented in any service setting and at all levels of a human services system (family & consumers, workforce, system). The DHS Trauma Think Tank envisions a system which, at every level:

  1. Realizes the widespread impact of trauma and understands potential paths for recovery.
  2. Recognizes the signs and symptoms of trauma in those involved with the system.
  3. Responds by fully integrating knowledge into policies, procedures and practices.
  4. Seeks to actively Resist re-traumatization (SAMHSA, 2016).

Resources shared on this page are meant to help those who share this vision of building trauma-informed human services systems.

Click on one of the documents below to open/download/save it.

  • Key Resiliency Factors

    Key factors to consider when building resiliency within staff, as well as when building a resilient human services system. Guiding questions are provided.

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  • Mental Health Interpretation – a socio-culturally linguistically responsive and trauma-informed approach

    For providing mental-health services interpretation with a culturally responsive and trauma-informed approach. The target audience for this resource is 1) professional interpreters and 2) qualified mental health clinicians. This resource is designed to enhance service provision to speakers with no or LEP by providing a review of basic interpretation in the mental health setting, offering a socio-culturally, linguistically-responsive and trauma-informed approach to mental health interpretation and preparing interpreters and mental health clinicians to work together in partnership.

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  • Organizational Prevention of Vicarious Trauma

    This article provides ways for organizations to proactively address vicarious trauma and the implications of vicarious trauma on the organization.

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  • Reflective Supervision Best Practice Guidelines

    This resource includes best-practice guidelines for distinguishing between administrative supervision, clinical supervision/consultation and reflective supervision/consultation. It explains what reflective supervision and consultation entails for the organization.

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  • Secondary traumatic stress core competencies in trauma-informed supervision

    A developmental assessment for supervisors which identifies core competencies for providing support to staff exposed to secondary trauma and provides resources to strengthen those areas of competency.

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  • Sharing Power

    Sharing power, or combining the knowledge of the human service professional and the lived experience of the individual receiving services, is a key part of trauma informed engagement. This worksheet includes a checklist for reflecting on agency and individual practices.

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  • Sharing Power – A Tool for Reflection

    This is a reflection tool that providers can use to help identify opportunities to share power in trauma-responsive care.

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  • Trauma Informed Agency Self Assessment

    This tool is an Agency Self-Assessment for Trauma-Informed Care to help assess an organization’s readiness to implement a trauma-informed approach. The assessment should involve input from agency staff.

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  • Trauma Informed Social Work Practice

    This journal article explains the components of a trauma-informed practice.

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  • Trauma Informed Systems NCTSN Presentation

    A presentation that provides a comprehensive overview of a trauma-informed child welfare system speaking to the experiences of children with trauma and potential effects on staff.

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  • Trauma Sensitive Schools and Classrooms Framework

    A framework for schools to incorporate trauma-informed practices.

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