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State PACEs Action

Update on Bumper Crop of State ACEs bills in 2017—46 bills in 20 states


The latest update of state legislation considered by state legislatures in 2017 reveals the growing interest by state policymakers across the country in addressing trauma across sectors. The attached “At-A-Glance” table shows 46 bills in twenty states reference Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) or trauma-informed policy and practice.

Take a look at the attached “At-A-Glance” table and leave a comment if your state considered ACEs/trauma legislation that is not included here. A handful of bills made it all the way through to enactment, including the first bill in Maine to reference ACEs—LD 1108 (dealing with nursing services in communities) survived when the legislature overrode the Governor’s veto. A New Mexico bill to include ACEs science in the Medicaid Family Home Visiting program was vetoed by the Governor.

With the majority of state legislatures adjourned for 2017 (11 states and DC are still in session), only a few of the bills in the table are still under consideration. A wide range of sectors are addressed in the bills including education (preK-12 and medical education), health care, home visiting, child care, training, foster care, juvenile justice, and others.

The bills that were enacted into law in 2017 include:
—an Illinois education law (Public Act 99-0927) to require social and emotional screening in school entry examinations
—an Oregon law (SB 241) mentions ACEs related to task force on children with incarcerated parents
—a Utah resolution (H.C. R. 10) to encourage state policy and programs to incorporate ACEs science to address trauma and ACEs
—a Vermont law (H. 508/No. 43) establishes an ACEs working group
—a Virginia resolution (SR 101/HJR 653) commends Trauma-Informed Community Networks
—a Washington state law (Chapter 202, Laws of 2017) mentions ACEs in legislative findings on children and mental health

See the attached At-A-Glance table for links to these laws as well as legislation considered but not passed in 2017 plus to reports on or A second document is attached to this post that includes the information provided in the table plus a link to the legislative tracker, providing specific actions taken on the bill and versions other than “as introduced.”

If you would like additional information on any of these bills (or have updates or corrections) or would like to discuss ideas for potential legislative proposals in your state, please add a comment to this post or email me directly ( An earlier post provided information of all of the ACEs and trauma-related statutes that have been enacted starting as early as the late 90s.


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