Past Events

  • Ask the Expert: Understanding Vicarious Trauma

    The Ask the Expert session has two-parts. Participants will receive a link to a 20-minute recorded mini lecture by Françoise Mathieu. This required pre-requisite session will provide a baseline understanding of vicarious trauma as well as exercises to help intervene.  Part two will be a live online session on May 24, 2018 at 11 am PST where participants will receive specific answers to their toughest questions about preventing and mitigating vicarious trauma. Questions can be sent prior to the session or asked live during the event.  

    Presented by: Françoise Mathieu, M.Ed, RP, CCC

    Vicarious trauma (VT) and Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS) are frequently used interchangeably to refer to the indirect trauma that can occur when we are exposed to difficult or disturbing images and stories second-hand. This can occur by viewing graphic news reports, gruesome or frightening television shows and various other media, hearing a detailed traumatic story from another person, viewing crime scene evidence, working in a court room, attending a debriefing or a conference where disturbing images are described or shown, and many other ways in which we can be indirectly affected by the content or visuals of some other living creature's suffering. Over time, repeated exposure to difficult content can have a negative impact on our functioning and overall mental health, and it is important to develop a sense of our individual warning signs and develop tools to mitigate these negative effects.

  • Ask the Expert with Bill Burmester: Post-Traumatic Masculinity: Toxic Virility and Courageous Vulnerability

    The Ask the Expert session has two-parts. Participants will receive a link to a 20-minute recorded mini lecture by Bill Burmester. This session is a pre-requisite and will provide key points around working with male victims of abuse. Part two is the live, virtual Ask the Expert session held on July 24, 2018 at 10am PDT. Questions can be sent prior to the session or asked live during the event. It is strongly encouraged that participants view the 30-minute session to allow for a deeper conversation during the live Ask the Expert event.

    Bill Burmester, M.A., M.F.T.

    This conversation addresses the gendered experience of male survivors of trauma by drawing upon clinical experience with male survivors of sexual abuse. We will consider them not only as victims but as boys and men whose trauma primes them to reconnect with their own, typically-abandoned vulnerability and therefore with their inherent capacity for empathy.  Embracing vulnerability, not as weakness but as an act of emotional courage, increases men’s chances for success and fulfillment in important relationships and improves their overall health and well-being.   

    We will first review the relational damage caused by abuse as it interacts with external and internalized norms of male in-vulnerability.  Then we will attend to how male survivors in therapy discover and develop a capacity for emotional daring, depth, authenticity, and intimacy.  As they work to repair trauma-burdened relationships, especially with each other in group therapy, spontaneity, humor, affection, and hope balance and help build tolerance for the pain of past trauma, in place of fighting, fleeing, and numbing it.

  • Ask the Expert: Victims with Disabilities

    Studies have long established that individuals with disabilities are disproportionately criminally victimized. In 2015, the average annual rate of violent victimization for individuals with disabilities was more than twice the rate among individuals without disabilities. Serious violent victimization for individuals with disabilities was more than three times than that for individuals without disabilities (Harrell, 2017). The risk of being a victim of crime, especially a victim of sexual assault, is 4 to 10 times higher for an individual with a disability. There are a number of factors related to individuals with disabilities susceptibility to victimization. Understanding and communicating effectively with adults and older adults with disabilities including intellectual disabilities, autism and other developmental disabilities who are victims of abuse are necessary skills for adult protective services, law enforcement, district attorneys, clinicians, and other social service personnel who may work with these individuals who have been victimized. Furthermore, assumptions made regarding these populations can inhibit effective communication, creating safe environments and conducting thorough investigations. This presentation will focus on the susceptibility of victimization for persons with disabilities as well as typical biases and assumptions that impact investigation and service delivery to individuals with disabilities.

    Presented by: Scott J Modell, Ph.D. 

  • Ask the Expert: Liat Wexler: Understanding the Cultural Dynamics of Abuse in LGBTQIA+ Relationships

    Participants will receive a link to a 20-minute recorded mini lecture by Liat Wexler. This session will provide key points around working with people in the LGBTQIA+ community who are victims of abuse.

    Participants will develop a more nuanced understanding of the culturally-specific tactics of power and control used in abusive relationships in LGBTQIA+ communities and the dynamics in these communities that create a foundation for abuse. Participants will gain greater awareness to spot and respond to partner abuse when it happens to queer and transgender clients.

  • Ask the Expert with Dr. Sayida Peprah: Fostering Teen Mothers: Connecting, Healing, Developing and Empowering

    The Ask the Expert session has two-parts. Participants will receive a link to a 20-minute recorded mini lecture by Dr. Peprah. This session is a pre-requisite and will provide key points around working with teen mothers who are in the foster system. Part two is the live, virtual Ask the Expert session held on August 9, 2018 at 10am PDT. Questions can be sent prior to the session or asked live during the event. It is strongly encouraged that participants view the 30-minute session to allow for a deeper conversation during the live Ask the Expert event.

    Presented by: Sayida Peprah, PsyD

  • Best Practices for Supporting and Treating Commercially Sexually Exploited Children

    Join us for a full day of training and discussion about the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC).  As professionals develop strategies that help both identify and support victims, this statewide event will share current trends and innovative approaches to working with CSEC youth and allow for networking with others in the field doing the work.

    Presented by: Holly Joshi, MA and Michelle Guymon, MSW

  • Building an Inclusive Model for Abuse Investigation for Children with Special Needs

    Currently, there is limited information for families of children with special needs on how to prevent and recognize the signs of abuse. The lack of information leads to under-reporting of abuse and limited prosecution of disclosures. The fear is that juries will not find children with disabilities as reliable witnesses because their accounting of abuse varies considerably compared with their typically developing peers.

    Studies around abuse within the special needs community are limited and rates of abuse can range from 22-70% of children within this population (National Research Council, 2001).  This shows an increasing need for professionals in the trauma field to obtain additional training around developmental disabilities, especially as it pertains to processing traumatic events.

    Presenter Information: Courtney Palm, LMFT

  • Child Abduction Intervention and Resource Training

    A Skill Enhancement Training on Family and Non-Family Abductions.

    This basic training introduces participants to a multidisciplinary approach to assist professionals working within all facets of child abduction. This is an opportunity for county partners to increase their understanding of the roles of each agency and network with partner agencies towards a more coordinated response for missing and abducted children. It is suitable for: child abuse and abduction programs, child protective services, law enforcement officials, mental health professionals, non-profit organizations, prosecutors and investigators, sexual assault/domestic violence programs, victim witnesses, and school personnel.

  • Child Forensic Interview Training (CFIT)

    The Child Forensic Interview Training for California is a four-day introductory course intended for new child forensic interview specialists. This course will introduce child forensic interviewing within the context of multidisciplinary team investigations; interviewer and team responsibilities; interview models and techniques; child development of language and cognition as it applies to interviewing; disclosure dynamics; childhood trauma as it relates to interviewing. Experiential exercises and role-play activities are interwoven throughout the four-day training. Video of actual interviews will be shown whenever possible. Completion of this course does not certify you to conduct child forensic interviews - consult your County CAC/MDIT for local requirements.

  • CSA: Special Populations with David Love

    The child abuse treatment field, mental health services, probation services and schools often identify young people with problematic sexual behaviors. This ranges from sexually abusive pre-adolescents, sexually inappropriate juveniles to youthful child molesters and rapists. When working with young people, male victims of sexual abuse are often identified. These victims represent a population that is significantly under-reported to appropriate legal entities. With both groups, it is important to use effective screening and assessment tools, to identify tested treatment strategies and to refer young people to appropriate services. 

    This workshop will examine screening and assessment tools and explain how to use them with a range of sexual behaviors. The workshop will separate normal sexual exploration and sexual reactivity from sexual exploitation. Treatment strategies for each category of sexual issues in young people will be identified. The key elements of these strategies will be discussed and case examples will be used to illustrate their application. The training will also discuss the value and risks of individual, group and family therapy. 

    Presented by: David Love, LMFT

  • Culturally Inclusive Service Delivery for Victims of Color

    In striving to provide culturally inclusive services, it is crucial that helping professionals be willing to examine the cultural lenses through which they view the world. While this is important no matter the race/ethnicity of the person being served, it is particularly important when working with people of color due to the nuances of cultural trauma that this population experiences on a daily basis. Utilizing a transformational learning lens, the goal of this workshop is to provide participants with an experiential and safe environment in which to develop the foundation needed to provide culturally inclusive services. This will be done through introducing participants to a model designed to visually expand the way that one views themselves, others, and the systems in which they work. Multiple modalities will be used to teach this workshop including lecture, experiential exercises, and small group work.

    Presented by: Taquelia Washington, LCSW, PPSC

  • Dynamics of Abuse and Trauma: Treatment for Children with Special Needs

    This training will start by examining the abuse dynamics unique to children with special needs.  These dynamics will include adult-child relationship expectations, access to prevention education, tolerance for exploitation, and theory of mind skills. 

    We will then shift to exploring how traumatic experiences vary between neurotypical children and those with developmental differences.  These trauma responses will be examined as part of the physiological, sensory, emotional, and cognitive systems of the child.  The presentation will then evaluate interventions for supporting these children within the therapeutic relationship and how to modify therapy settings to achieve regulation for children with a variety of sensory needs.  Finally, we will examine case studies to bring together how to evaluate symptoms, educate families, and therapeutically support children within this special population.  

    Presented by: Amber McDonald, LCSW and Courtney Palm, LMFT

  • First 48 Hours: Law Enforcement’s Response to Abducted, Endangered and Missing Children

    Topics to be discussed include:

    Missing Child Intake Procedures
    First Responder and Supervisor Responsibilities
    Neighborhood Video Canvassing and Roadblock Procedures
    Victimology
    Supervisory Command Post Considerations
    Stranger Abduction and Murder Case Studies of Children
    AMBER Alert
    Presented by: SA Jeffrey R. Cugno and Officer Bradley Sides

  • Guidance for Professionals Serving People Who Experience Sexual Assault or Domestic Violence

    People with disabilities experience crimes at least twice as often as people without disabilities and yet often do not access victim services or the criminal justice system.  This session focuses on specific strategies for an effective response to victims with a wide range of disabilities including those people with disabilities who also identify as LGBTQ.  Topics include: prevalence, definitions, attitudes, obstacles, unique dynamics, accommodations, effective written and verbal communication, forensic sexual assault exams, protocols and tools for law enforcement and prosecutors. We will also look at tools and resources that can support sexual assault investigations and advocacy including accessible written materials.

    Presented by:  Leanne Mull

  • How to Survive a Courtroom Attack

    This interactive training will assist forensic interviewers in anticipating courtroom challenges, utilizing research-based responses and practicing testimony to make interviewers more comfortable in the courtroom setting.

    Presented by David Broady and Mary Green

  • Immigration, Mental Health, and Relief for Survivors of Crime and Domestic Violence

    Professionals who come into contact with immigrants and undocumented individuals are well-positioned to help those individuals identify immigration options that may be available to them as survivors of crime and/or abuse.  The goal of this workshop is to provide participants with a foundational knowledge of the immigration process and immigration relief for survivors, to provide participants with an overview of mental health issues commonly facing immigrants, and how best to provide culturally competent resources to those survivors while understanding the possibility of vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue. This information will be provided through lecture, visual aids, and experiential learning. 

    Presented by Dr. Mariela G. Shibley, Psy.D, FP and Rachel Ray, JD

  • Let’s Talk! Talking with Youth About Sexual Health and Identity Issues

    This webinar as best suited for professionals who are working with youth who are either sexually active, looking to become sexually active and also are either LGBTQ or sharing that they are unsure of their sexual orientation and or experiences they are having with different partners. This webinar will go over the LGBTQIAA terms, meanings and also the fluidity of ones sexual identity and self-identity. Finally, participants will leave the webinar with some statistics, information and tips on how they can have these uncomfortable talks in a way that isn't so bad.

    Presented by: Jenny Aguilar, MSW

  • Macupathy: A New Paradigm in Understanding and Treating the Health and Wellness Needs of Men and Boys

    Conventional approaches to working with men are grounded in the concept that mental illnesses like anxiety and depression lead to poor relational skills, as well as inadequate self-concepts and dangerous tendencies toward externalization.  Our work treating men has suggested that this paradigm misses critical, gender-based components of socialization, which has resulted in unsuccessful therapy for men who seek counseling to address inadequate relational skills and emotional intelligence.  

    This workshop will explore the development of mascupathy as a more effective diagnostic paradigm in which we provide men with the tools necessary to create healthy self esteem, build meaningful relationships and emotional literacy, and adequately address problems like domestic violence, assaultive behaviors, substance abuse, and the overall cycle of perpetration and victimization.

    Presented by: Randy Flood, MA, LLP

  • Male Victims: The Impact of Trauma on Masculinity

    This course will define trauma, outline the effects of trauma on children with emphasis on male children, explore multicultural considerations of abuse, identify appropriate assessment techniques, and implement self-care strategies.

    Presented by: Gimel Rogers, Psy.D.

  • MDT Child Abduction Simulation

    When a child is reported missing, time is crucial and can mean the difference between life and death. This child abduction simulation will allow Child Abuse and Abduction Programs, Child Protective Services, Law Enforcement, Mental Health, Non-Profit Organizations, Prosecutors and Investigators, Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Programs, Victim Witness, and School Personnel, to gain field experience as they are put in a scenario of finding a missing child.

    Participants will experience practical application and increase their hands-on ability to provide effective intervention and investigation in child abduction cases. Participants will gain knowledge and experience that can be shared with their local agencies. The simulation will cover first responder protocol, AMBER alert, child welfare investigation, working with schools, the District Attorney’s role, international abduction, and working with non-profit organizations.

  • MDT Response to Child Sexual Abuse

    This is an introductory team-focused training for professionals employed by governmental agencies or nonprofit agencies in the fields of law enforcement, prosecution, child protective services, social work, children's advocacy, therapy, medicine, or otherwise who work directly with child victims of crime as part of a current or emerging Child Advocacy Center or Multi-Disciplinary Interview Team (CAC/MDIT) in California. This training offers participants an opportunity to explore the concerns of other disciplines related to team investigations and provides an introductory framework for child forensic interviewing within the Child Advocacy Center Model as practiced in California.

  • Munchausen

    This training will present national practice and management guidelines on Munchausen by Proxy: Abuse by Pediatric Condition Falsification, Caregiver-Fabricated Illness in a Child, or Medical Child Abuse Due to Factitious Disorder Imposed on another. Course is designed for professionals in child protection, healthcare, law enforcement, family court, education, mental health, prosecution and defense. Bring your confusing or difficult cases to share with colleagues and review with experts. 

    Topics to be covered:

    • Definitions and terminology • Warning signs • Epidemiology • Identification in healthcare, schools, and other settings • Reporting suspected abuse • Obtaining evidence • Appropriate documentation • Determining risk and harm • Ruling out abuse • Case management and treatment • Supervised visitation • If and when to reunify • Support for the family • Where to go with vexing cases

    Presented by members of the APSAC (American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children)

    Taskforce on Munchausen by Proxy:

    Brenda Bursch, Ph.D.
    Michael Weber, B.S.
    Beatrice Yorker, J.D., R.N., F.A.A.N.
    Claudia Wang, M.D., F.A.A.P.

  • Online Q&A Serving Victims with Disabilities with Leanne Mull

    The session will include discussion of strategies for effective response to victims with a wide range of disabilities.  There will be 30 minutes of content followed by 30 minutes for participants to ask questions directly to the trainer on topics including: cases that presented unique dynamics, overcoming barriers experienced by people with disabilities, getting your team educated on the nuances specific to this population, communication tips for working with crime victims with disabilities, and any obstacles you encounter in your work with clients with disabilities. 

  • Reflect: Theory and Practice to Implement Change in Communities Affected by Trauma

    Join us for a full day of training, discussion and networking on how to best serve immigrant populations, people of color, and those with limited English proficiency. This statewide event will provide information essential to working with these underserved victims, while also providing the opportunity to network with others doing this essential work. As part of this event, participants will develop strategies to take back to their home agencies.

    Keynote Presentations:

    Ripple Effects of Historical Trauma: Recognizing and Reversing its Impact on Immigrants and People of Color - presented by Sayida Peprah, Psy.D
    This presentation will take participants on a journey through the historical traumas of African Americans, Native Americans and various immigrant communities.  There will be a dissection of both the mental and physical health impacts of transgenerational trauma as well as exploration of the resilience and strengths evidenced by the various group's survival through the generations.  Recommendations for how to use a strength-based model in providing services, care and treatment will be offered.  
    Journey to Liberation: The Relevance of Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome - presented by Gimel Rogers, Psy. D
    Analyzing the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) categories in conjunction with the implications of Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome (PTSS), literature results have indicated that childhood trauma links to emotional and social adjustment problems in adolescence and young adulthood. In particular, childhood and systematic trauma in African American males greatly impacts their interpersonal functioning. It will also look at the impact of internalized racism and emotionality on African American male youth. This presentation will also review literature to examine the impact of PTSS on African American males and if liberation psychology can mediate the impact of PTSS.
    ‘Lost’ and ‘Found’ in Translation: Discovering Strategies to Effectively Communicate with Immigrant Survivors - presented by Varsha N., JD
    This interactive keynote will provide professionals with necessary tools to effectively communicate with immigrant survivors of domestic violence.  The workshop will address the cultural myths and stereotypes that come into play and will provide strategies for managing such situations.  Through discussion and interactive exercises, professionals will learn techniques to improve cross-cultural communication for interacting successfully with diverse populations.

    Presented by: Sayida Peprah, Psy.D; Gimel Rogers, Psy. D; Varsha, N., JD

  • Social-Sexual Understanding: What You Need to Know About Social-Sexual Education and People with Disabilities

    SEEDS Educational Services, Inc., will present a workshop exploring the facts regarding the prevalence of disabilities regarding social-sexual education, abuse and common myths associated with disabilities including how professionals can combat these practices with simple tools and understanding.  We will also explore the lack of social-sexual education resources to an undeserved population of people with developmental disabilities and easy social-sexual materials that can help combat the ever-growing statistics. Resources will be made available to preview and discuss.

    Presented by: Stacy Everson, RN, CFLE, DDNA

  • Traumatic Grief and At-Risk Youth

    When the sudden and traumatic death of a significant caregiver or close family member occurs, the youth is often left without the support and tools that they need to help them start their mourning process. Children and youth who have experienced the death of a caregiver or close family member often need to acknowledge and begin to understand all the feelings associated with the death particularly if the death is stigmatized or a crime was involved. In this workshop you will examine the multiple factors that impact a youth’s grief and how their community of caregivers (foster parents, social worker/therapist, teachers and relatives) can assist in the grieving process through the Four Tasks of Mourning as described by JW Worden, PhD.

    Presented by: Michele Bartlett, LCSW

  • Treatment Considerations for Transgender Clients: Working with High-Risk Populations in Justice System

    This course will provide treatment considerations when working with high risk populations both on parole and in correctional facilities. It will amplify the unique challenges correctional settings place on transgender individuals seeking clinical support. Participants will be given examples of group curriculum that is designed to provide transgender inmates with a therapeutic place to explore gender identity concerns and achieve long-term comfort in gender identity expression, while maximizing overall well- being. The training will begin with a review of gender identity in a culture that lacks acceptance. It will then provide an introduction to prison culture. Discussion will focus on treatment considerations when working with transgender inmates who are victimized, specifically trans- women inmates housed in a male institution.

    Presented by: Sonia A. Bahro, Ph.D.

  • Understanding Trauma Impacts and Supporting Foster Children with Incarcerated Parents

    This session will offer participants a window into the trauma impacts of having an incarcerated parent, as well as explore recommended strategies for those working with foster children to mitigate these impacts. After reviewing the framework of trauma types, specific traumas experienced by foster youth, with an incarcerated parent(s), will be reviewed.  Participants will be given strategies for working with foster children and how to support the adults who are caring for them.  A part of the training will focus on vicarious trauma to help service providers and foster parents identify self-care techniques.

    Presented by: Sayida Peprah, Psy.D

  • Webinar: Attachment as a Buffer and Source of Healing for Trauma Survivors

    “The best predictor of the effects of trauma is not trauma history; the best predictor of the effect of trauma is whether you can seek comfort in the arms of another.”  Bessel van der Kolk

    This presentation will cover various attachment classifications and how they impact both adults and children. Individuals learn very early in life, through their early experience with caretakers, whether the world is a safe or unsafe place. This early “lens” of the world has far reaching implications.  This workshop will discuss the formation of attachment patterns, their resulting “internal working models” and the intersection between attachment and victimization or trauma.

    Presented by: Karen Buckwalter, LCSW 

  • Webinar: Autism and Autism Movement

    “Autism Movement Therapy” is a method that works with individuals across the spectrum to help them understand directions to music with movement.  The structure and repetition help to wake up the brain and provide meaning.  This method has also been developed into a subsequent group entitled “Autism Works Now!” where individuals who have been successful are now working on pre-employment skills and working with the support needed to be successful in getting and keeping jobs.  Each of these practices will be discussed and reviewed.

    Presented by: KayDee Caywood, Ph.D. 

  • Webinar: Leave No Survivor Behind: Mirror Memoirs

    During this webinar, nationally-recognized survivor-activist Amita Swadhin will share their journey of breaking silence, healing, and using survivors’ stories as a tool for collective healing and organizing to end rape culture. They will present their latest project, Mirror Memoirs, an oral history and leadership development pipeline for LGBTQI people of color who survived child sexual abuse, as an example of intersectional praxis, and will discuss how centering the most marginalized survivors can liberate everyone. They will also discuss the work to end rape culture as an intergenerational task, and what we can learn from the latest public dialogues about sexual violence and celebrities.

    Presented by: Amita Swadhin, MPA

  • Webinar: One Size Doesn’t Fit All: What Is the Ideal Placement for Commercially Sexually Exploited Children?

    What types of placements and associated services have a positive impact on stabilizing CSEC youth? Los Angeles County has engaged in research to answer this pressing question and provide guidance for other jurisdictions. The training will discuss the current array of placement options being utilized for CSEC, including foster care facilities, group homes, mental health facilities and specialized out of state placements. Discussion around specialized services that have been developed, including specialized courts in the delinquency and dependency systems, dedicated units of probation officers and social workers, and specialized community based advocates. Findings from the research will be presented, including an assessment of AWOL rates in various placement types, and valuable feedback that has been shared by youth through focus groups. This webinar is intended for those who serve individuals in mental health, foster care, probation, and child welfare settings.

    Presented by: Michelle Guymon, MSW

  • Webinar: Working with Complex Trauma Part 2

    The term complex trauma describes both children's exposure to multiple traumatic events, often of an invasive, interpersonal nature, and the wide-ranging, long-term impact of this exposure. These events usually begin early in life and can disrupt many aspects of the child's development and the very formation of a self.  Since they often occur in the context of the child's relationship with a caregiver, they interfere with the child's ability to form a secure attachment bond. Many aspects of a child's healthy physical and mental development rely on this primary source of safety and stability (National Child Traumatic Stress Network).

    Presented by: Lisa Conradi, Psy.D.

  • Webinar: Working with Male Victims of Child Sexual Abuse

    While many of the dynamics of child sexual abuse are shared between boys and girls, there are circumstances and aspects of sexual abuse experienced and endured by boys that tend to be gender specific.  The reason for these differences is rooted largely in cultural and societal models of masculinity.  While these models are continually evolving, they are still present in most cultures around the world.  This webinar will address the unique circumstances encountered when boys are sexually victimized, either by males or females.  The topics that will be covered in this webinar include addressing the specific issue of sexual abuse perpetrated by older females on younger boys and the mixed messages those boys often receive, and understanding how binary views of sexual orientation and a largely "straight-dominated" masculine culture impacts male survivors both in childhood and later in life.

    Presented by: Roger Canaff

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