Helms School of Government
Master of Science in Criminal Justice (MS)
ACEs, adverse childhood experiences, attorneys, criminal justice, trauma, vicarious trauma
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Gray, Kyla Eileen, "An Analysis of Effects of Vicarious Trauma among Attorneys: A Descriptive Qualitative Approach to Develop Training Programs Focused on Reducing Vicarious Trauma Among Attorneys" (2021). Masters Theses. 792.
Vicarious trauma refers to exposure to another person's traumatic experience. Professionals working within the criminal justice system, policing, courts, or mental health are regularly exposed to traumatic events. The idea or expectation that a person can be exposed to this every day and not be affected is unrealistic. A new approach to mitigating and preventing exposure to adverse impacts of vicarious trauma is vital to these employees' mental health. This article focuses on attorneys who work with vulnerable populations and how vicarious trauma affects their everyday professional and personal lives. This paper will discuss the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), what they are, the importance of understanding them, how they can make an induvial more susceptible to the negative effects of vicarious trauma. This study will shed light on preventative training that can help decrease the risk of one developing vicarious trauma, along with educational programs to teach healthy coping mechanisms to mitigate the negative effects of vicarious trauma.