March 29, 2016

From Diane Yatchmenoff, Ph.D, Director, Trauma Informed Oregon

2016 Implementation Forums are Underway

We were over-capacity for a Trauma Informed Care training in Lane County on March 3, and we had a good turnout at our first Implementation Forum the next day as well. At the Forum, we provided information about the Trauma Informed Care (TIC) implementation process – all the way from agency readiness and foundational knowledge through the information-gathering and planning phases, to implementation and the feedback loop that goes right back into ongoing education, learning, and setting new priorities. A visual model for the process is in development and will be up on our website soon, along with related materials and links to resources for its use. We also reviewed the Oregon Health Authority Trauma Policy that affects many behavioral health entities throughout the state.  The policy has been in effect since last July and will be included in site visits beginning this summer. The Trauma Informed Oregon Standards of Practice for TIC align directly with the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) Trauma Policy, so we went over the purpose and use of the Standards as well.

One of the best parts of the morning, though, was a panel of local providers who are working to implement trauma informed care in their agencies.  Panelists shared a little about their process as well as the particular challenges and successes they’ve encountered along the way. This led to breakout sessions where participants had a chance to talk in more depth and in smaller groups with others struggling with similar issues. The wrap-up was a discussion of how Trauma Informed Oregon can best support implementation efforts around the state.

Our next Forum is scheduled for April 21 in the Tri-County Area, and will be held at the Ambridge Center in Portland, also in conjunction with a training. Based on feedback from the Lane session, we have added some additional content to the Trauma Informed Oregon portion, and we will structure the breakout sessions around specific aspects of the implementation process.

Trauma Informed Schools Get a Boost from the Legislature

At the close of the 2016 Legislative Session, Representative Margaret Doherty and our partners at the Oregon School Based Health Alliance were proud to announce passage of House Bill 4002. The bill was the result of efforts among multiple partners to reduce physical, social, and emotional barriers to learning and to address Oregon’s falling graduation rates and chronic absenteeism. House Bill 4002 does two things (quoting from Representative Doherty’s newsletter and the OSBHA website):  1) creates a statewide strategy for addressing chronic absenteeism in our state, and 2) allocates funds to create a three-year pilot project to develop a trauma-informed model for education, health services, and intervention strategies in communities with high level of need. School districts of Education Services Districts will be eligible to apply as pilot sites, with funding of $500,000 for the remainder of this biennium and the possibility of additional funds for the 2017-19 biennium. A Request for Proposals is currently being developed. More information can be found at