CWTI Trainings

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Evolution of Federal Child Welfare Legislation

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Summary GraphicSummary

As society has become more invested in the care of children, government has taken an increasingly active role in protecting the welfare of vulnerable children through legislation. 

From the progressive reforms of child labor in the early 20th century to the Chafee Act of 1999, government has introduced legislation to encourage the organization of state child welfare systems around the primary goals of promoting the permanency, safety and well-being of children. 

These policies impact modern child welfare casework practice by tying funding streams to outcomes and enhancing services that preserve and create permanency for children in care.


Followup GraphicFollow Up

This online lesson will be followed up by in-class discussion of these key pieces of legislation and how they affect your responsibilities as a caseworker.  Please remember to bring your written responses to the class. Your instructor will let you know when to bring them in.

In addition, there will be a guest presentation at a future class on ICWA and Maine’s Native American population.    


Web Resources graphicResources

The Kempe Center for the Prevention & Treatment of Child Abuse & Neglect

Child Welfare Information Gateway

National Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children

American Bar Association

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Administration for Children and Families

References GraphicReferences

McDaniel, N. & Lescher, N.C. (2004). The history of child protective services. In
C.R. Brittain & D.E. Hunt (Eds.), Helping in child protective services: A competency-based casework handbook (pp. 31-47). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Watkins, S.A. (1990). The Mary Ellen myth: Correcting child welfare history.
Social Work, 35(6), 500-503.

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