Principles of Trauma-Informed Approaches to Child Sexual Abuse: A Discussion Paper.
Quadara, Antonia. Hunter, Cathryn.
Australian Institute of Family Studies. Australia Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Published: October 2016
On Friday 11 January 2013, the Australian Governor-General appointed a six-member Royal Commission to inquire into how institutions with a responsibility for children have managed and responded to allegations and instances of child sexual abuse. This paper describes the emergence of trauma-informed care in both the international and Australian service contexts. The first section provides a brief contextual backdrop for the interest in trauma-informed care in human service systems. The second section describes the emergence of the concept of a trauma-informed approach to service provision and provides a summary of the key principles underpinning a trauma-informed approach. In section three, the available evidence on current approaches to trauma-informed models and programs in different settings is described and assessed. Considered here is what the research suggests about the success or effectiveness of trauma-informed approaches and what this suggests about the overall utility of the concept. This section also considers how trauma-informed care is being applied in the Australian context. The final section provides an overall assessment of how trauma-informed approaches are applied in practice, including a critical analysis of the strengths and limits of these practices, and the empirical evidence and practice-based understandings that underpin trauma-informed approaches and treatments. Numerous references. (Author abstract modified)
trauma informed practice; child abuse; sexual abuse; mental health services; child welfare reform; evidence based practice; program implementation; therapeutic effectiveness; Australia