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It’s About More Than Four Walls and A Roof
Vivek Sankaran writes about the necessary steps beyond simply providing housing for families in crisis or need
The Power of Asking Why
Observing court one day, I heard one of those remarks that should stun anyone within earshot. Testifying in the case being heard, in which a family separation was on the table, the caseworker remarked, “No, I didn’t make reasonable efforts to reunify because the mother was homeless and was living in a room in a shelter.”
Creating Space for the Pain — and Joy — of Child Welfare Work
Leaders in the child welfare legal world should foster a work culture where joy and pain can co-exist, writes Vivek Sankaran.
Measuring What Actually Matters
When measuring the worth of child welfare lawyers, we should consider the quality of their relationships with clients, writes Vivek Sankaran.
When Foster Youth Have Their Own Kids, Our Support Disappears
Too often, the trauma young people have experienced in foster care is assumed to be healed when they have children, writes Vivek Sankaran.
A Court Reminds Us of the Obvious: Probable Cause Counts in Child Welfare Cases, Too
Kudos to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court for siding with parents' Fourth Amendment rights in child welfare cases, writes Vivek Sankaran.
Get Kids with Kin, and Quickly
Research tells us that children in foster care fare much better when living with their family, but too often, there are barriers to kin placement, writes Vivek Sankaran.
In Court, Children are Unseen and Unheard
My 16-year old client – a young woman who had already spent several years in foster care – just wanted to share her story in court. She hoped to tell the judge the ways in which group home staff were mistreating her.
A Crisis Reveals the Need to Modernize Juvenile Courts
This week, I received word that many courts – including the juvenile court in which I practice – were closing. That is, for the indefinite future, my court would not be holding any hearings, other than emergency hearings, to address whether a child needs to be removed for their immediate safety.