Wednesday, June 30, 2021

NCCPR news and commentary round-up, week ending June 30, 2021

● A commission studying mandatory child abuse reporting in Massachusetts makes child welfare history by reversing course and refusing to pass a series of horrible recommendations – because several commissioners listened closely to public hearing testimony, took it seriously, and changed their minds.  There’s a good story in CommonWealth Magazine and I have a blog post about it

The Imprint summarizes two new reports, one from Rise and one from the upEnd Movement, calling for a radical reenvisioning of child welfare. The story includes links to both documents. 

● And speaking of radical reenvisioning: "If foster care were a good thing, the only way we'd get in is through affirmative action,” says Joyce McMillan, founder of JMacForFamilies, during this webinar, Child Welfare Justice: A Public Health Abolitionist Approach sponsored by Radical Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago: 

Indiana Lawyer profiles a mother who finally won a ten-year battle for her son – freeing him from foster care with the help of a dedicated public defender.  The child never should have been placed at all.  

● But what if you don’t have a lawyer? We hear a lot about states where parents don’t get high-quality representation.  But there are some states where they sometimes get no representation at all.  That may be about to change  thanks to pending legislation in one of those states – Minnesota. The Minnestoa bill also would reduce barriers to placing children with relatives in kinship foster care instead of with strangers.

The Houston Press takes a close look at racial bias in child welfare in Texas – and finds it’s even worse in Houston than in the state as a whole. 

A new Texas law requires child protective services to inform parents of at least some of their rights – including their right to record interviews when caseworkers interrogate them.