Business Game Changers Radio with Sarah Westall: Record Number of Childhood Trauma and Abuse is Affecting Communities and our Workforce

  05/09/2016  12:00 pm PDT

“What we do to our children, they will do to society” - Pliny The Elder, 1st Century A.D.

Have you ever wondered why so many businesses are struggling to find a dedicated workforce with basic functioning skills to complete tasks? Or why our schools are troubled, jails filled, and so many communities are distressed? Doctors and other experts are pointing to 30 years of in-depth research demonstrating that childhood trauma and abuse is the number one factor causing this epidemic. Children that are abused likely grow up to be troubled and unproductive adults. These adults are also likely to repeat the abuse cycle they had as children and create another generation of troubled adults.

The problem is a growing issue in our country. We have 12 to 18 million reports each year to child services reporting abuse. Due to under reporting, experts believe the actual number of abuse cases are much higher. To make matters worse, according to the Kids At Risk Action Board,

“The committed and hardworking people doing the work cannot meet the existing needs of the children they serve (only the worst cases get into the system) and the privations of these children regularly exceed the training, resources, and capacity of our institutions and the foster and adoptive parents that love and care for them. Political neglect and lack of public awareness keep things the same”

What are the adult problems that we often see stemming from early child abuse?

After 30 years of research, doctors and researchers have concluded that childhood trauma causes many adult problems such as obesity, depression, jealousy, narcissism, substance abuse, risky sexual behavior, and many other issues. The cost of these problems are demonstrated by the absentee rates of workers, the skill deficiencies to do basic tasks, the dysfunctional relationships in our teams, the theft of our resources, and the overall lack of ability to thrive as a community or business.

To understand this issue more, Business Game Changers welcomes Mike Tikkanen, Author of Invisible Children, and Founder and President of the Kids At Risk Action Board (KARA). Mike has spoken to many agencies about this topic including the United Nations in New York.

If your organization or group would like to have Mike speak at one of your events or if you want to learn more about this issue go to his website at or contact him directly by email at

Artist and musician Katrina Tea originally dedicated her song Brightest Star to the children of Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut. She is now offering all proceeds from the sale of her CD to KARA, to help children suffering from child abuse and neglect. You can purchase her CD at


Sarah Westall

BUSINESS GAME CHANGERS 12PM PT / 3PM ET Business Game Changers with Host Sarah Westall covers the big issues, disruptions, and cutting edge innovation. Each episode bri...

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Mike Tikkanen

Mike Tikkanen is the Founder and President of KARA and the author of Invisible Children.  His organization’s mission is to be a passionate and unapologetic advoca...

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Katrina Tea

Katrina Tea is a composer and singer. Her non-profit, Magical Music for Humanity, creates original compositions of music for charities around the world. She has perform...

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