June is Reunification Month

National Reunification Month was created in 2010 by the American Bar Assocation (ABA) to celebrate the people and efforts around the country that help families stay together. According to AFCARS data, reunification is the most common permanency option achieved by children in the child welfare system. Visit the ABA's National Reunification Month website for webinars,

Two Programs Added to Families First Approved List

On January 25, 2022, three new programs were rated and two were approved for federal funding under by the Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse Youth Villages’ Intercept® becomes one of only 12 programs to earn the well-supported distinction from the Clearinghouse, the top category out of three allowing states to spend without bumping into any spending

Appropriation Update

Discussions continued between key appropriations leaders, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL), Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Congresswoman Kay Granger (R-TX).  Not much has been revealed but Chairperson DeLauro offered some broad positive comments about progress.  Like the reconciliation, Democratic leaders including the White House would like a final deal by March 1.

Intersection of Child Welfare and Suicide Prevention: Webinar

CWLA partnered with the SAMHSA-funded Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) to provide an informative and timely webinar centered on the intersection of child welfare and suicide prevention: considering the increasing stress brought on by the pandemic it is critical that we pay attention to this issue for children and youth, especially the most vulnerable. Moderated

ProPublica Article Raises Concerns on “Shadow Foster Care”

On December 1, 2021, ProPublica and The New York Times Magazine published an article titled, ‘They Took Us Away From Each Other’: Lost Inside America’s Shadow Foster System” by reporter Lizzie Presser.   The article details what some have labeled diversion from foster care by using informal kinship care placements. It doesn’t question kinship care, but

New AFCARS Data See Drop in Numbers, Maybe Freeze in Courts or Systems

November 29, 2021 New AFCARS data indicates foster care number down, but a closer examination may suggest a pandemic impact on entries and exits.  The new AFCARS report was released last week, and it shows a significant decrease in foster care placements decreasing from the 2019 figure of 426,566 children in care to 407, 493

Administration Nominates Oregon’s Gaston to ACYF

On Thursday, November 18, 2021, the President nominated Rebecca Jones Gaston to become the Commissioner for the Administration on Children Youth and Families (ACYF). The position has been vacant since Elizabeth Darling stepped down during the presidential transition. Currently Gaston is the Child Welfare Director for the State of Oregon’s Department of Human Services. Before

CWLA Comments to Senate on Mental Health and Substance Use Needs

On Monday, November 1, 2021, the Child Welfare League of America submitted its recommendations to the Senate Finance Committee on how the Committee and country can make critical changes to the nation’s mental health and substance use treatment systems. The Committee had asked the behavioral health community and other parties to submit recommendation to the

Bass Introduces 21st Century Children and Families Act

On Thursday, November 4, 2021, Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-CA) introduced 21st Century Children and Families Act (HR 5856). The bill bans discrimination in placement and recruitment of foster and adoptive parents and places added emphasis on kinship care. It requires states to substantiate with clear and convincing data and analysis that the child welfare agency

Family First Clearinghouse Reviews More Programs

The HHS Prevention Services Clearinghouse released more program evaluations last week. The clearinghouse identified Familias Unidas as a “well supported.” Familias Unidas is a “family centered intervention that aims to prevent substance use and risky sexual behavior among Hispanic adolescents” by empowering parents with adolescents aged 12-16. The program implements five steps: parent support network

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