New Tool Kit Helps Leaders Communicate the Benefits of Family First Law

Posted February 4, 2019, By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

Parents with a young person on a bicycle.

The Annie E. Casey Foun­da­tion has devel­oped a down­load­able tool kit to help child wel­fare lead­ers, advo­cates, pri­vate providers and oth­ers talk about how the Fam­i­ly First Pre­ven­tion Ser­vices Act can help improve out­comes for chil­dren and families.

Young peo­ple involved in the child wel­fare sys­tem do best in fam­i­lies, in a safe and sta­ble envi­ron­ment that sup­ports their long-term well-being, accord­ing to research. The pas­sage of Fam­i­ly First took a large step toward this vision by restruc­tur­ing how the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment spends mon­ey on child wel­fare to ensure that more chil­dren in fos­ter care are placed with fam­i­lies. The law also pro­vides more sup­port for crit­i­cal ser­vices, such as men­tal health and sub­stance abuse treat­ment, in-home train­ing and fam­i­ly ther­a­py that can help pre­vent the need for fos­ter care in the first place.

Read more about how Fam­i­ly First will change the child wel­fare system

The tool kit fea­tures talk­ing points for agency staff, guid­ance for media inter­views and text to incor­po­rate in pub­lic remarks. Casey encour­ages child wel­fare agency staff to pick and choose which resources can help them con­fi­dent­ly com­mu­ni­cate about the goals of Fam­i­ly First and how it works.

The tool kit includes:

We hope that these tools help child wel­fare lead­ers move toward effec­tive imple­men­ta­tion of the law and a bet­ter future for young peo­ple,” says Tracey Feild, direc­tor of the Foundation’s Child Wel­fare Strat­e­gy Group.

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