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June 15th CTIPP CAN Call - Toward an Integrated Science of PACEs


Are you interested in learning about new research that integrates the latest brain and social science?

Then please join CTIPP’s next Community Action Network (CAN) call on Wednesday, June 15, 2022, from 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. ET / 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. PT:

The conversation will explore the integrated science of positive and adverse childhood experiences (PACEs). Our featured speakers are Craig McEwen, a former Bowdoin College professor of Political Economy and Sociology, and Dennis Haffron, an adjunct professor at Morton College and member of the Community Development Society, will share their research integrating brain science with social science in an accessible way.

The call will also feature an update on Congress and federal legislation, as well as a briefing from Capitol Hill staff on gun control legislation and improving data collection for adverse childhood experiences (ACEs).

We look forward to seeing you on June 15th!

Background for June 2022 Call: An integrated PACEs science includes much more than the CDC-Kaiser Permanente Adverse Childhood Experiences Study, the neurobiology of toxic stress and its health effects, the epigenetics of stress, and the emerging understanding of resilience and healing.

An integrated PACEs science also highlights the differential social distributions of both adverse and positive childhood experiences and underlines the original focus of the ACE study on population health, not individual health. It places PACEs in the context of the social determinants of health (SDOH) which point to the ways in which health and well-being are shaped by our social and community contexts including social cohesion and resources, workplace conditions, racism, discrimination, and structured inequality; by economic stability including poverty, food security, and housing stability; and by the built environment including housing quality, transportation, healthy air and water, levels of crime/violence.

By turning from individual health and healing in the context of trauma to the social determinants of health in this broader framework, our attention turns as well to identifying and advocating “societal changes that improve the quality of family and household environments during childhood,” as Felitti, Anda and colleagues put it in their original ACE article.

  • Craig McEwen is a professor of sociology emeritus at Bowdoin College. He collaborated with his neuroscientist brother Bruce, one of the world’s leading experts on toxic stress, in writing about “Social Structure, Adversity, Toxic Stress, and Intergenerational Poverty.” Craig and a Bowdoin student (Scout Gregerson) collaborated on an article for the American Journal of Preventive Medicine on “A Critical Assessment of the Adverse Childhood Experience Study at Twenty Years.” With the assistance of Dennis Haffron, he has written: “Toward an Integrated PACEs Science” which will be the basis of our talk. With Dennis, he is the community manager for the PACEs and the Social Sciences on PACEs Connection.
  • Dennis Haffron has worked, as an agency director, in delinquency prevention, labor community services, senior citizens’ services, community crisis centers, substance abuse prevention, and services for people with disabilities. When, as a sociology instructor, he encountered ACEs for the first time, he became fascinated by the feedback interactions between PACEs, the individual, society, its institutions, and culture. He has taught PACEs science to college students, staff, and faculty and to senior citizens. He is, along with Craig McEwen, community manager of PACEs and the Social Sciences on PACEs Connection.

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