Breaking the Stigma: Understanding Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma

Lambia Karitsiotis & Peggy Campbell-MacLean | September 11 | 9:00 - 10:00 AM | Room 2584

Research shows that approximately 70% of workers who deal regularly with trauma stories are likely to experience symptoms of secondary trauma transferred to them from the disturbing material, such as a worker experiencing nightmares reflecting the experiences as reported to them by a trafficking victim. Source? The helping field has gradually begun to recognize that workers are profoundly affected by the work they do, whether it is by direct exposure to a traumatic event (paramedic or police officer), or secondary exposure (hearing clients talk about trauma they have experienced). Compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma have been described as the cost of caring for others in emotional pain and can strike the most dedicated worker. Ironically, helpers who are burned out, fatigued and traumatized tend to work more and work harder. As a result, they go further down a path that can lead to serious physical and mental health difficulties, such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse, stress related illnesses, and even suicide.
Breaking the Stigma: Understanding Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma is an educational awareness presentation for front line workers who deal with a traumatized population.

1)       Educate workers on the different definitions and forms of trauma they can experience during their careers as well as the symptoms they may suffer.

2)       How to build resiliency when dealing with work related trauma as well as the effects on our loved ones.

3)       How to get help for symptoms relating to compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma.

About the Presenter