SSW Focuses on Adverse Childhood Experiences

Mechanism by Which Adverse Childhood Experiences Influence Health and Well-being Throughout the LifespanOn March 4, 2014, over 450 leaders learned about the brain science behind the effects of adversity in childhood. A conference, along with a series of presentations, focused on the significant research on trauma effects and practical implications. Led by Associate Professor Dr. Heather Larkin and the LaSalle School, the conference keynote speaker was Susan Dreyfus, CEO of the National Alliance for Children and Families. Other speakers included David Wallace, LCSW-R, Clinical Director at the LaSalle School; Mary Sise, LCSW, DCEP, Director at the Center for Integrative Psychotherapy, and a panel of other experts. Panel members included: Eunju Lee, PhD (School of Social Welfare); Julia Hastings, PhD (School of Social Welfare/Public Health); Allison Appleton, PhD (School of Public Health); Lynn Warner, PhD (School of Social Welfare); Lani Jones, PhD (School of Social Welfare); Dana Peterson, PhD (School of Criminal Justice); Nicole MacFarland (Doctoral Candidate, SSW & Executive Director, Senior Hope); Betty Devine, MSW (Board Member, Senior Hope); Steve Marcal, PsyD (Center for Disability Services); Joanne Trinkle, LMSW (Parsons Child and Family Center); and Wilma Alvarado-Little, MSW, MA (Center for the Elimination of Minority Health Disparities).

New Program Area at Center for Human Services Research: Intimate Partner Violence

Partner violence is the leading cause of intentional deaths of women, is present in 30 – 60% of child welfare cases, and represents the largest single category of assaults to which police respond. Exposure to partner violence interferes with a child’s ability to learn, increases the victim’s long-term health care costs astronomically, and can sabotage otherwise successful family interventions such as Healthy Families, subsidized housing, and job training programs. Despite the high prevalence and devastating consequences of intimate partner violence, it is a relatively new research area. The paucity of strong research, matched with a provider field unaccustomed to partnering with researchers, has resulted in a shortage of evidence-based practices for implementation in the field.

Graphic brining people togetherBuilding on its reputation as a community-engaged research center with an expertise in working with vulnerable populations, the Center for Human Services Research (CHSR) is announcing a new Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) program area. CHSR is a social research center that conducts studies, designs information systems, and informs policy and program development for a broad spectrum of agencies that serve vulnerable populations.

In the past few years CHSR has increased its work in the area of partner violence, as a natural outgrowth of its work in child welfare, education, and juvenile justice. Projects have included:

  • An evaluation of a police home visiting program for families experiencing IPV
  • Research on the State’s child welfare/domestic violence co-location program
  • A systems assessment to launch an innovative partner violence homicide prevention program
  • Work with a NYC-based not-for-profit to conduct capacity building in the area of service-delivery to LGBTQ victims of partner violence

Given the inter-disciplinary nature of this problem, a broad range of faculty across the Capital Region addresses it in their research. Therefore, the Center is planning an interdisciplinary conference on Intimate Partner Violence for fall, 2014 to create a community of scholars on this issue: offer research and paper presentation opportunities for work being conducted in this area now, and create fruitful partnerships across disciplines to further community-responsive research in the field. The conference will result in a journal publication. Anyone interested in further information about the initiatives or conference should contact Amy Barasch at