During the Capitol Hill Day, while CWLA members handed out Hot Topics on key policy issues, members could also break to attend a briefing that focused on the significance of the child welfare workforce.
CWLA was focusing Capitol Hill attention on the significance of the workforce in advancing the many outcomes within child welfare and its impact on enhancing child and family well-being. $20 million in funding to support caseworker visits and workforce improvements must be reauthorized under the Promoting Safe and Stable Families program this year. In addition, the Administration has proposed a significant and important child welfare workforce proposal that CWLA supports that would simplify access to Title IV-E funding for public and private agency staff .
As part of the briefing CWLA featured an innovate program that seeks to promote a Children’s Corp through the efforts of the nonprofit, Fostering Change for Children based in New York City. Chief Executive Officer Barry Chaffkin presented information on how that agency’s Children’s Corp program works, the progress and the research so far and how they look to advance this impressive initiative.
Chris Walker, Reporter, Westword, Denver Colorado, recipient of the CWLA Anna Quindlen Award for journalism provided insight on what he has learned from his in-depth reporting on the challenges of a being a part of the child welfare workforce. In January, Walker authored an in-depth story about what is Colorado Child-Welfare Caseworkers Are Often Overwhelmed, Misunderstood. At the briefing he was able to describe his insight into the challenges, difficulties and personal costs for child protection workers.
Later that evening at a CWLA dinner event, he followed comments by Commissioner Rafael Lopez, Administration on Children Youth and Families, with additional comments on the role of the news media in child welfare stories.