November 18, 2021

Ohio House Behavioral Health and Recovery Supports Committee
House Bill 428
Chair Sara Carruthers

Chair Carruthers, Vice Chair Pavliga, Ranking Member Boyd and members of the House Behavioral Health and Recovery Supports Committee, thank you for the opportunity to provide interested party testimony on House Bill 428. The Center for Community Solutions is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank that aims to improve health, social and economic conditions through research, policy analysis and communication. My name is Tara Britton and I am the Director of Public Policy for our organization. We want to thank Vice Chair Pavliga and Representative Edwards for their work on HB 428 that would establish a study commission on Adverse Childhood Experiences or ACEs.



Over the last several years, our organization has examined ACEs and trauma and how they impact people across their lifespan. Eliminating ACEs and the associated trauma must be a top priority and understanding ways to address them is an important endeavor that this study commission will be tasked with. There are myriad policies that can make a different in reducing incidences of ACEs and trauma, but I want to focus in on one area: addressing the needs of children and youth with complex needs, known as multi-system youth (MSY). These children and youth are often served by multiple public systems due to complex behavioral health and developmental needs. Some of these children are engaged with the child welfare system because their parents had no other choice than to relinquish custody in order to access limited and expensive services. While others are engaged with the child welfare system because of neglect or abuse in their household. This tragically translates to some multi-system youth having experienced trauma as well. This underscores how critical it is that the recommendations of the ACEs Study Commission focus on trauma-informed care across these multiple systems. The Commission should work along side the state in its work to bring coordinated care to 50,000 to 60,000 children and youth across multiple systems through OhioRISE (Ohio Resilience through Integrated Systems and Excellence).

We look forward to engaging with the Study Commission and would be happy to share more about the work of our organization with multi-system youth. I’ve included resources below on ACEs and multi-system youth. Do not hesitate to reach out with additional questions at Thank you for your time.

Additional Resources

Trauma, Toxic Stress and the Impact: Defining Adverse Childhood Experiences:

Implementing a trauma-informed approach in public assistance programs