child protection in the united states n.
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  1. CHILD PROTECTION IN THE UNITED STATES Norma Threadgill-Goldson, Ph.D., MSW Eastern Kentucky University ©2008 National Association of Social Workers. All Rights Reserved. 1

  2. SESSION CONTENT • Child Protection (CP) Definition • United States child protection: Early influences, policies, and statistics • Foster Care • Future of children and families

  3. CHILD PROTECTION (CP) According to UNICEF “child protection is the response to violence, exploitation and abuse of children by governments and citizens. This is inclusive of the commercial sexual exploitation, trafficking, child labor, and harmful traditional practices…” (UNICEF)

  4. RIGHTS OF CHILDREN The Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989), outlines the basic rights of children Supports the idea that the family is the fundamental unit to socialize children and to support their growth and well-being “…the child, by reason of his physical and mental immaturity, needs special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection, before as well as after birth", Declaration of the Rights of the Child The United State did not sign the Declaration

  5. U.S. CP: EARLY INFLUENCES • Late19th Century “child savers” goal • Protection of children from caretaker • Removal children from harmful environments (i.e., “orphan trains”) • 1909 First White House Conference on the Care of Dependent Children • concern with the institutionalize, promoted prevention of removal from homes • Today U.S. government major funder • child protective services is provided by state & local governments, and nonprofit social service organizations (NPOs)

  6. U.S.: CHILD PROTECTION Commitment to protect children: From harm by their primary caretakers by: • Enacting laws and implementing polices • Funding interventions and programs Competing values exist between • Protection of children v Preserving families and parents rights

  7. PRIMARY POLICY INFLUENCE • The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) of 1974 and amendments • The Social Security Act • Title IV-B and Title IV-E funding • Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) of 1980, 1997

  8. THE CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION AND TREATMENT ACT OF 1974 (CAPTA) • Government funding to states for CAN • Prevention, identification, prosecution, and treatment • Government grants Demonstration Project to public and NPO agencies • Government role in supporting research, evaluation, data collection, technical assistance • Health provider to report substance exposed new born infants • State mandated • Develop and maintain child abuse reporting system • Investigation child maltreatment • Protect confidentiality of data • Develop prevention and intervention programs

  9. Title IV-B and Title IV-E The Social Security Act 1935, Legal framework for funding CP • Prevention, protective services, and foster care and adoption assistance, rehabilitation – wide range of social services • Provides 96% of child welfare funding

  10. Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) of 1980, 1997 • Mandated court order for out of home placements • Limited funding for voluntary placement • Court approval of permanency plan • 1997 move family preservation family focus from child focus approach • Court filing for permanency child in placement more than 15 months • Established child and Family Service Reviews Federal Children’s Bureau compares performance of states

  11. FOSTER CARE Foster care is the temporary placement of children who cannot remain in their own homes because the parents’ condition or behavior preventing the parents from providing care

  12. TYPES OF OUT-OF-HOME CARE • Non-relative placement • Relative or kinship placement • Pre-adoptive home placement • Institutional or Residential Placements • Shelters • Group home • Hospitals • Independent Living

  13. POLICY IMPACT ON FOSTER CARE • CAPTA, 1974 • Changed provision of services • ASFA, 1997 • Emphasis permanency planning The Independent Living Initiative of 1986 and Foster Care Independence Act of 1999 • Increased support for children aging out of foster care

  14. CHILDREN IN CARE • Steady rise in numbers from 1980s to 2000s ½ Million Plus (513,000) children in foster care in 2005: • 24% relative placements • 51% reunified (less than yr 2000) • 15% exited FC to relative • 18% exited were adopted • 21% of those adopted were adopted by relatives  • 50% exited, in care < 1 yr Child Welfare Information Gateway

  15. WHY DO CHILDREN COME INTO CARE? • Child maltreatment – Abuse, neglect, and Exploitation • Abandonment • Resulting from complex and combination of problems and situations • Issues of poverty • Parental substance abuse • Parental incarceration • Domestic Violence

  16. CHALLENGES OF FOSTER CARE SYSTEM • Disproportionate number of children of color, particularly African American children • Recruitment and retentions of foster parents and case manager • Large caseloads • Limited resources • Complex system of service delivery a mix of private and government service providers

  17. DISPARITY: RACE, ETHNICITY, & CULTURAL HERITAGE Disproportionately represented in FC • Children of color 35% child population in U.S. • 55% - Children of color in care – • African American children 15% of child population • 38% -African American children in care –

  18. FUTURE OF CHILD PROTECTION Child protection researchers and professional in the field indicate that system improvement can enhance the well-being of children include: • Implementing policies and practices that support and strengthen families • Engaging families • Employing culturally competent practice • Supporting social service worker (Chipungu, S. S., & Bent-Goodley, T. B.)

  19. REFERENCES Courtney, M. E. (2008). History of Policy Framework. In Terry Mizrahi, and Larry E. Davis, Encyclopedia of Social Work (20 ed.), vol. 1, A – C, Washington, DC:NASW Press. Child Welfare Information Gateway, Chipungu, S. S., & Bent-Goodley, T. B. Meeting the challenges of contemporary foster care. Everett, J. (2008). Foster care. In Terry Mizrahi, and Larry E. Davis, Encyclopedia of Social Work (20 ed.), vol. 1, D – I, Washington, DC:NASW Press. Office on Child Abuse and Neglect (HHS) & Goldman, S., & Wolcott, K. (2003).Coordinated Response to Child Abuse and Neglect: The Foundation for PracticeUser Manual Series (2003).   United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child UNICEF