As Michigan’s newly elected governor and legislators prepare to take office, one of the largest crises facing our state is going largely unnoticed: adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). A growing body of science and research show that young people who experience abuse, neglect and household dysfunction, collectively known as ACEs, without intervention, have a very high likelihood of facing risky health and social behaviors, chronic health conditions, low life potential and even early death. As a result, society is paying billions of dollars a year to combat conditions such as smoking, diabetes, alcoholism and drug abuse, and is incarcerating hundreds of thousands of individuals at a very high cost, all due to ACEs.

A Citizens Research Council of Michigan report shows that we spend more than $70 billion on health in Michigan without measurably improving health outcomes.

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