Richard Gelles


Foster Care, Hamilton and America’s Devolving Compact with Vulnerable People

On February 9, President Donald Trump signed into law the most significant reform to foster care since the federal government got into that business. This fundamental re-ordering of the government’s role in child welfare extends far beyond the 437,000 children living in foster care today.

Texas Not Moving Fast Enough to Move Foster Children out of Hotels and Offices, Attorneys Say


Legendary Child Rights Litigator Staffs Up to Storm the Big City

Marcia Lowry, the crusading child welfare attorney, works out of an office on Hardscrabble Road. She didn’t name this leafy suburban New York lane, but it suits her reputation: The slew of big-ticket settlements she’s secured against large foster care systems made her one of the nation’s most respected, winning and – in some quarters – loathed attorneys for vulnerable youth.


Richard Gelles Argues for a Child-Centered Approach to Child Welfare

I was very excited to get my copy of Richard Gelles’ widely awaited new book, Out of Harm’s Way. Gelles is one of the giants of child welfare. He wrote the The Book of David, which raised awareness of the unintended consequences of the prevailing family preservation ideology and helped inspire passage of the Adoption and Safe Families Act of 1997.


What We Can Expect from the Trump Administration

President-Elect Donald J. Trump’s administration and its likely policies pose many more questions than answers.  What does a Trump presidency mean for those in the child welfare field? What impact will Dr.


Pennsylvania County Leads in Use of Big Data to Stem Child Abuse, Probes Ethics First

Computer algorithms guide our decisions in big ways and small. They nudge us to buy a particular blender on Amazon and tailor ads to our interests on our Facebook pages, but also seek to reduce repeat domestic violence arrests and assess risk during criminal sentence proceedings.


Penn Conference Renews Energy on Transition-Aged Foster Youth

Andrew Bridge, former foster youth, Harvard Law graduate, and the author of the wildly popular novel “Hope’s Boy” has just quieted the crowd of roughly 150 child welfare advocates, researchers and youth services providers convened on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania for a two-day conference exploring issues facing youth aging out of foster care.