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When Faith Hurts: Recognizing & Responding to the Spiritual Impact of Trauma

A talk by Victor Vieth (USA)
Director, Research and Education, Zero Abuse Project

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About this talk

Failing to address spiritual injuries stemming from child maltreatment may impair a child’s physical and mental health. At the same time, restoring a child’s spiritual health may provide a source of resiliency that improves the probability of successful life outcomes. This discussion will explore situations in which religion and child protection may conflict, and provide a synopsis of research on the spiritual impact of child abuse and neglect. An overview of how this dynamic may play out before, during, and after a forensic interview is discussed.

Takeaway Ideas:

Although religious influence in the child protection system is waning, MDTs must be mindful of the spiritual needs of maltreated children and their families. Such a response is not only culturally sensitive, a growing a body of research suggests it may be critical to the short- and long-term welfare of abused and neglected children.

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Victor Vieth (USA)

J.D., M.A.

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