1619, 1776, and Family Separation: How We Move Child Welfare Forward with Equity

Dear President Biden and Vice President Harris, 

During the campaign, I saw your signs touting the phrase, “Our best days still lie ahead.” 

But what do “best days” look like for our children and families? 


Pressure Builds to Reduce Racial Disproportionality in New York’s Child Welfare System
Joyce McMillan rallies the crowd Monday at an “Abolish ACS” rally she planned in Harlem. Photo: Megan Conn

Calls to dismantle child welfare systems that disproportionately impact Black families grew this week, as a group of roughly 100 parents, lawyers and even city social workers gathered on Martin Luther King Jr.

Youth Services Insider


On Way Out, Administration Stresses Civil Legal Advocacy and Racial Equity in Child Welfare

The traditional flurry of last-minute child welfare policy work from the Administration for Children and Families continued yesterday, with two memoranda on civil legal advocacy, and the lessons of and opportunities created by the coronavirus pandemic. 


Top Stories of 2020: The Abolition Movement in Child Welfare

The killing of George Floyd, and the summer of protests that followed this tragedy, spurred new conversations about the appropriate role of law enforcement. Child welfare systems, which lack the lethal force component of law enforcement but do police communities with the ability to break up families, got no amnesty from the discussion. 


After Abolishing School Police, Oakland Creates a Plan for What Comes Next
Nearly six months after a momentous decision to abolish its school police department, the Oakland Unified School District Board of Education agreed at a meeting Wednesday night to endorse a safety plan that relies on “culture and climate ambassadors” instead of cops.


A Conversation on Race and the Child Welfare System in the United States

Since the nation witnessed the murder of George Floyd at the hands of members of law enforcement, it has been hard to contain the sorrow and  anger. As he called out for his deceased mother, he spoke to every mother across this nation who has struggled to keep her child safe.


The Disenfranchisement of Black Foster Youth

Black foster youth are caught in a nexus of incarceration which is formed by their engagement with child welfare, education and policing. Our recent brief published by UCLA’s Black Male Institute on Los Angeles County public schools serves to elucidate these grim realities.


Child Welfare Must Face History To Get Past It

I have been thinking a lot lately about James Baldwin’s wise assertion that “People are trapped in history and history is trapped in them.” 

History is deeply embedded in the child welfare system.


New York City To Investigate Hospital Drug Tests of Black and Latino New Mothers, Which Can Prompt Foster Care Removals
Credit: Christine Ongjoco

New York City’s Commission on Human Rights has launched an investigation into whether hospitals are targeting Black and Latino pregnant mothers and newborns for drug testing, an inquiry that will assess whether they are being subject to racial bias and discrimination.