Studies show that many defendants, victims, and witnesses have histories of trauma; striving to reduce that trauma is central to our work.
Trauma-informed care—practices designed to identify and treat the symptoms of trauma—is critical to meeting the needs of those involved in the justice system. Recognizing this, the Center’s operating programs and national training and technical assistance are rooted in trauma-informed approaches. Specifically, we train staff working in courts on trauma and its impacts, design courtroom practices to create a sense of safety, and help communities to better understand the impacts of trauma and prevent future crime.
A number of our initiatives also focus on specific populations affected by trauma, including Make it Happen, which works with young men who have experienced violence; the Child Witness Support Program, which offers trauma-informed services to children and adolescents; and the Strong Starts Court Initiative, which supports Family-Court-involved infants and their families.
Bronx Child Trauma Support
Bronx Child Trauma Support provides services to young people who have been exposed to violent crime.
Make It Happen
Make It Happen helps young men between the ages of 16 and 24 who have experienced violence acquire the tools necessary to overcome traumatic experiences.
Save Our Streets (S.O.S.)
Save Our Streets (S.O.S.) seeks to end gun violence at the neighborhood level by changing local norms.
Strong Starts Court Initiative
The Strong Starts Court Initiative enhances the capacity of Family Court to bring positive changes to court-involved babies and their families.
On our New Thinking podcast, an audio portrait of Make It Happen, our program working with young men of color in Crown Heights, Brooklyn affected by violence. Through interviews with participants and practitioners, the episode explores the intersections of trauma, involvement with the justice system, and the lived experience of race.
This planning toolkit is a blueprint for communities, violence interrupter programs, and traditional victim service providers that want to improve their responses to young men of color who have experienced trauma.
On our New Thinking podcast, Patrick Sharkey, the author of Uneasy Peace: The Great Crime Decline, the Renewal of City Life, and the Next War on Violence, discusses the wider costs of violence and the threat posed by inequality and disinvestment to the current fragile gains. He points to the signal role of community organizing and community-based nonprofits in combating violence and building safer, more resilient cities.