Impact of perception of safety on outcomes in the context of trauma

Jonathan C. Huefner, Jay L. Ringle, Chanelle Gordon, Patrick M. Tyler

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    4 Scopus citations


    Youth safety is an essential component of trauma-informed services (U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, 2020). Youth perception of safety should be indicative of a healthy care environment and contribute to successful outcomes. It has been shown that trauma impacts an individual's perception of and response to perceived threat. This study examines the relationship between youth perception of safety, history of trauma, level of aggression, and outcomes in a residential care setting. Data came from the organization's administrative database and from the care provider certification measures collected during the period of January 2016 through December 2018. Trauma exposure and symptoms, the perceived safety and aggression were used in a mediational path model analysis in predicting goal attainment, program completion, and post-discharge placement. Higher levels of youth trauma were not directly associated with poorer outcomes, and higher percentages of goals met when program supervisor perception of safety was higher. Additionally, trauma symptoms were related to lower rates of program completion when youth perception of safety was higher. Results provide insight into how trauma, perception of safety, and aggression within a residential placement intersect to impact the youth's treatment progress.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number105060
    JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
    StatePublished - Jul 2020

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Education
    • Developmental and Educational Psychology
    • Sociology and Political Science


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