The overwhelming majority of youth in the child welfare system (CWS) have experienced trauma. This qualitative data-mining study of case records explores how trauma manifests in child welfare and how child welfare workers engage youth who have experienced trauma. Case records revealed that youth exhibit many signs and symptoms of complex trauma, however, most did not have a trauma-related mental health diagnosis. The records included examples of how child welfare workers utilized elements of trauma-informed practice. Findings support universal application of trauma-informed approaches in child welfare. Future research should explore these issues in case-matched child welfare and mental health records.
July 27, 2018