CHICAGO – As Chicago neighborhoods experience an unprecedented number of shootings and gun deaths, state Rep. Juliana Stratton, D-Chicago, is working to address the long-term trauma this violence can have on young people and other local residents.
“While it’s clear that Illinois needs to do more to address violence in our neighborhoods, we also need to consider the long term consequences of growing up around and living with such violence,” Stratton said. “When children grow up exposed to violence, that violence could continue for generations. We need to take immediate steps to address the trauma and stop the cycle of violence so our communities can heal.”
Stratton has introduced House Bill 3644, which creates a “Trauma, Resiliency and Recovery” Task Force to craft policies geared towards crafting mental health policies for children and adults who have experienced violence or witnessed other horrific events and suffer from trauma as a result. Many people carry the scars of trauma throughout their life, and it ultimately affects their work and personal lives. The task force would bring together representatives from throughout Illinois’ government, academia, law enforcement, and trauma service groups to collaborate on ways the Illinois state government could better serve trauma victims in Illinois.
“The solution to violence requires addressing the root causes of violence and this is what the Task Force will consider,” Stratton said. “Too many are carrying invisible wounds neither they nor their families may not know how to treat. We as a state need to do more to help these survivors.”
Stratton’s trauma task force was approved by the House Restorative Justice Committee on March 9. It now heads to the full House for approval.