Click here to skip to content

Welfare Reform on the Web (January 2005): Child Welfare - Overseas

COMPLEXITY, CONFLICT AND UNCERTAINTY: ISSUES IN COLLABORATION BETWEEN CHILD PROTECTION AND MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES

Y. Darlington, J.A. Feeny and M. Rixon

Children and Youth Services Review, Vol.26, 2004, p.1175-1192

Article reports on new data from a large mixed-method research project in the US that aims to identify and examine the current and collaborative practices of child protection and mental health services. Analyses revealed that:

  • a great deal of collaboration occurred across a wide range of government and community-based agencies;
  • collaborative processes were often rewarding for workers;
  • collaboration was most difficult when the nature of the parental mental illness or the need for child protection intervention was contested.

The difficulties experienced included:

  • communication;
  • role clarity;
  • competing primary focus;
  • contested parental mental health needs;
  • contested child protections needs;
  • resources.

THE CHILDREN'S REVOLUTION

E. Shedlow

Community Care, Dec. 2nd-8th 2004, p.40-41

The article looks at China's efforts to move a million orphaned and abandoned children out of institutional care and into adoptive and foster families. Many of these children are physically disabled and/or emotionally damaged. Adoption and fostering are new concepts in China, and families are often ill prepared to cope with children with complex needs. Training of social workers to provide support is in its infancy, but growing rapidly.

ENHANCING SERVICES TO YOUTHS LEAVING FOSTER CARE: ANALYSIS OF RECENT LEGISLATION AND ITS POTENTIAL IMPACT

M.E. Collins

Children and Youth Services Review, vol.26, 2004, p.1051-1065

Recent US federal legislation has provided funding to states to put in place additional services and support for young people leaving foster care. The Foster Care Independence Act 1999 and the Chafee Foster Care Independence Program allow states to design enhanced services in the areas of education, housing and life skills training. Additionally, the Education and Training Voucher Program specifically provides financial assistance to foster care leavers attending post-secondary education.

NEW STRATEGIES TO PROMOTE THE ADOPTION OF OLDER CHILDREN OUT OF FOSTER CARE

A.B. Cowan

Children and Youth Services Review, vol.26, 2004, p.1007-1020

The adoption of older children from foster care has become a priority in the USA. Adoption offers children in foster care the opportunity to grow up in a stable family. In order to facilitate the adoption of older children, policymakers need to:

  • decrease the numerous inter-jurisdictional barriers to adoption;
  • fund post-adoption support services;
  • match families' strengths to children's needs in order to minimise the risk of placement breakdown.

PRIVATIZING ADOPTION AND FOSTER CARE: APPLYING AUCTION AND MARKET SOLUTIONS

E.A. Blackstone, A.J. Buck and S. Hakim

Children and Youth Services Review, vol.26, 2004, p.1033-1049

Hard to adopt children remain for long periods in foster care and are often shifted from one temporary placement to another. Some children reach adulthood without ever having achieved permanency. Article describes and discusses the effectiveness of privatisation of the administrative aspects of adoption and foster care in Kansas, Michigan and Illinois in tackling this problem. Goes on to suggest the application of the economic theory of auction to the adoption process. Argues that this would help solve the problem of children languishing in foster care and provide additional resources to assist the adoption of hard to place children.

PUTTING TEETH INTO ASFA: THE NEED FOR STATUTORY MINIMUM STANDARDS

M.R. Lowry

Children and Youth Services Review, vol.26, 2004, p.1021-1031

The passage of the Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) in 1997 embodied a shift from a statutory regime that prioritised family reunification to one that seeks to move children through foster care and into permanency as quickly as possible. ASFA has not been fully implemented in most US states, and there are concerns that the statute itself has created new problems. Further legislation is needed to set minimum standards to ensure a qualified, trained and adequate workforce, a minimally adequate information system to support that workforce, and adequately trained foster parents.

Search Welfare Reform on the Web