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Barriers to Rebuilding the African American Community

Understanding the Issues Facing Today’s African Americans from a Social Work Perspective

Tywan Ajani

Barriers to Rebuilding the African American Community explores the major threats and roots affecting both America’s most racially polarized periods as well as the major issues plaguing the African American community. The author provides intelligent insight into the deeper roots of America’s long history and struggle with racism as well as the solution. The author shows how a background investigation of medical science, culture, and social policy can propel or subdue an entire people group, and examines research on A.C.E.S. (Adverse Childhood Experiences), which affects all communities regardless of race. This book is an exciting and well-researched exposeì into one of America’s most electrifying socio-political movements.

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7 Adverse Childhood Experiences; the Nemesis of the Black Community


7Adverse Childhood Experiences; the Nemesis of the Black Community

“Racism, even if unintentional, determines where, how, and how well black people live, relative to other groups in America.”

—The Brookings Institute 2016

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) research is one of the most recent and prominent developments in the field of childhood trauma and psychology. Whoever seeks to discover the roots of the major problems in the black community will find answers in ACEs. What is the source of poverty, violence, criminal subculture, and the disposition of a multigenerational cycle of substance abuse and incarceration? Upon investigation, one will quickly discover that many of the issues that are so prevalent in the African American community stem from ACEs.

Dr. Nadine Burke Harris is a Jamaican-American pediatrician who is the founder and CEO of the Center for Youth Wellness, an initiative seeking to create a clinical model that recognizes and effectively treats toxic stress in children. She practices at the California Pacific Medical Center Bayview Child Health Center. In a TED TALK presented in 2014, Dr. Burke Harris passionately explained ←53 | 54→the link between ACEs and adult behavior. Additionally, she reported a link between childhood trauma and adult-onset illnesses.

Burke Harris reported that she began to notice some common behaviors among her clients. She was subsequently introduced to ACEs research. She investigated related studies that led to some major findings, including significant data on adverse childhood exposure linked to deaths among...

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