Last June, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) hosted a seminal, daylong Symposium on Child Health, Resilience & Toxic Stress in Washington, DC. The event convened federal policymakers, national thought leaders and partner organizations – including AMCHP – to discuss the emerging science demonstrating the impact of toxic stress on a child's lifelong health. The Symposium also helped "create consensus on a broad, implementable vision to strengthen federal policies and funding to address toxic stress and early childhood adversity."
- One of the key messages of the symposium is that the federal government plays a vital role in reducing children's exposure to toxic stress and building their resilience. The AAP is leading development of a toxic stress-informed policy agenda to comprehensively support the prevention of toxic stress and the fostering of resilience through efforts to:
- Ensure optimal health, including physical, mental and behavioral health, through access to affordable and high-quality health care
- Prevent exposure to violence, neglect, and other adverse experiences of childhood and strengthen the child welfare system to ensure children have long-term, stable, supportive relationships with adults
- Promote academic attainment through the support of high-quality education beginning in early childhood
- Support strong anti-poverty programs that expand economic opportunities and increase social mobility through: affordable, high-quality child care; tax policies that support working families; access to affordable housing; and anti-hunger programs that promote nutrition
- Support services that strengthen families, including parenting and literacy programs
Additional resources generated to support the symposium include: