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Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare

Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare

Posts by Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare

Hello again! Over the past few weeks we have been working to revamp our policy blog and plan for the upcoming legislative session here in Minnesota. Below you will find our child welfare legislative roundup for the month of September so far. For the remainder of September we will be highlighting the federal Child and Family Services Improvement and Innovation...
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Our Friday recap of highlighted legislation on our Facebook page: S. 1234: Partners for Stable Families and Foster Youth Affected by Methamphetamine or Other Substance Abuse ActBill description: A bill to amend part B of title IV of the Social Security Act to reauthorize grants to assist children affected by methamphetamine or other substance abuse under the promoting safe and...
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Our Friday recap of highlighted legislation on our Facebook page: H.R. 2012/S. 420: Foster Care Mentoring Act of 2011Bill description: To support the establishment or expansion and operation of programs using a network of public and private community entities to provide mentoring for children in foster care.Bill status: Waiting for a hearing in the House Education and the Workforce committee.This...
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This week on our Facebook page we began highlighting current child welfare-related legislation in the U.S. Congress as a way to keep our readers informed about legislation that, if enacted, may impact their work with clients involved in the child welfare system. As an extension of this service, we will be recapping our Facebook highlights each Friday with additional commentary...
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Last update: 8-17-2011 (updates highlighted in yellow) This is a list of current child welfare-related bills in the U.S. Congress. Although I attempted to ensure that it is an exhaustive list, I may have missed one or more. If you know of a child welfare-related bill that is not in this list, please let me know! Also, please feel free...
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Last update: 8-19-2011 (updates highlighted in yellow) This is a list of current foster care-related bills in the U.S. Congress. Although I attempted to ensure that it is an exhaustive list, I may have missed one or more. If you know of a foster care-related bill that is not in this list, please let me know! Also, please feel free...
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Last update: 8-19-2011 (updates highlighted in yellow) This is a list of current adoption-related bills in the U.S. Congress. Although I attempted to ensure that it is an exhaustive list, I may have missed one or more. If you know of an adoption-related bill that is not in this list, please let me know! Also, please feel free to put...
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In light of the Summer Institute in American Indian Child Welfare held this week in Walker, MN, I thought it would be good (and relevant!) to discuss the importance of collaboration between early childhood and child welfare agencies for American Indian children. Since the majority of the speakers during this conference were from the Ojibwe (or Anishinaabe) tribe, what is...
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State Policies That Require or Recommend Child Welfare/Early Childhood Collaboration for Intervention ServicesInteragency Early Childhood Intervention SystemThis system is federally mandated by Parts B and C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Part B is special education services for children ages 3 to 21, whereas Part C is early intervention services for infants and toddlers birth-2 years of age....
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Governor Dayton issued a statement last night that the State Capitol would reopen this morning at 9am. This is a result of Governor Dayton's acceptance of the June 30 GOP budget offer last Friday (7/14), which offered to balance the budget with borrowing from future tobacco settlement payments and shifts in school aid. However, Governor Dayton's (reluctant) acceptance of the...
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As of today, Judge Gearin has ordered continued funding of additional programs and grants from the Minnesota Department of Human Services, based on Special Master Kathleen Blatz's recommendations from July 11: MFIP Consolidated Support Services Grants & MFIP Consolidated Support Services Grants T01, F640These two grants provide support services for MFIP/DWP recipients, including job skills training and job-search assistance Food...
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Our next summer topic is on the youngest of children involved in child welfare, those aged 0-5 years. We chose to focus on this topic not only because of the attention early childhood experiences has been getting lately from state and federal legislators (e.g. U.S. Senator Al Franken, MN Representative Nora Slawik, and MN Senator Geoff Michel) (and governors!), but...
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As I'm sure you know by now, the Minnesota government began its shutdown on July 1 due to a budget impasse between the governor and the legislature. It is now Day 6 and no deal is in sight. Several news outlets (see below for links) have reported that the two sides did not meet over the 4th of July weekend,...
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To wrap up the month of June's focus on international adoption, I'd like to discuss illegal international adoptions, as well as what happens when international adoptions are disrupted. It is important to understand the issues these can cause for the field of child welfare in the United States. Illegal International Adoptions An international adoption can quickly and sometimes inadvertently become...
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As the July 1 deadline for the governor and legislature to come up with a budget solution draws nearer, many people are wondering how a government shutdown could affect them. In addition to the previous post highlighting the two different petitions filed by the Attorney General and Governor Dayton, there are several other great resources for information on this topic....
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Today, June 20, is World Refugee Day. Since our June theme is international child welfare, we decided to highlight a program in the United States that helps unaccompanied refugee minors, in honor of this day. The Unaccompanied Refugee Minors Program, overseen by the Office of Refugee Resettlement, "helps unaccompanied minor refugees develop appropriate skills to enter adulthood and to achieve...
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This week two petitions were filed in Ramsey County Court regarding continued funding for core functions of the state should a government shutdown occur. The first petition was filed on Monday, June 13, by the Minnesota Attorney General's office. This petition stated that in order to protect the constitutional rights of Minnesotans on a state and federal level, certain core...
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In this post we will discuss policies informing international adoption both in the United States and in Minnesota. Note that other countries will have their own policies regarding international adoptions; for examples, see this recent article on new regulations in Ukraine, Mexico, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Future posts will look at how these policies translate into processes, as...
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'Budget Solution' Meetings The legislature and Governor Dayton have scheduled meetings throughout June to discuss budget solutions to prevent a government shutdown beginning July 1. The two sides met a few times this past week; so far, the GOP-led legislature has offered to increase spending in K-12 education, public safety, and the courts, but will not increase revenue. Governor Dayton...
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This first entry in June's theme of international child welfare will discuss a few ways in which international child welfare policies are already impacting policy here in the United States and in Minnesota. Future posts will focus on international adoption as a subset of international child welfare, with an emphasis on policies affecting this practice and outcomes of international adoptees...
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As the legislative activity at the Minnesota Legislature winds down, the Child Welfare Policy Blog will continue to provide a weekly update of happenings at the Capitol. In addition, starting this week, we will post a weekly blog entry dedicated to a special topic related to child welfare policy. We will tackle a different policy theme each month. This way,...
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My apologies for staying quiet the past couple of weeks as the transition Katie mentioned in the previous entry has taken place. I am hoping to get you caught up on what has been happening at the legislature in this entry, so it will be a little long. The Budget Over the past couple of weeks, the political talk has...
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By now, you've probably heard the news about the May 23rd legislative deadline that came and went this week. Minnesota Public Radio sums it up in a nutshell: "Gov. Dayton vetoed nine budget bills assuring a special session will be called to pass a two-year budget. Dayton also said there's a "strong likelihood" that a government shutdown will occur." For...
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Minnesota is racing toward the Monday, May 23rd, deadline. Governor Dayton has indicated that he will reject any legislative budget proposals that resolve the deficit using cuts only; Dayton is calling for an approach that includes cuts and increased revenue. See Politics in Minnesota and MPR. Yesterday, the legislators passed to Governor Dayton their final budget proposal, which does not...
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The conference committees have been bustling in advance of the session deadline. House and Senate conference committee members agreed to the Health & Human Services budget amongst other budget areas. The Conference Committee Working Targets spreadsheet shows how each budget area's current proposal compares to the other policy areas, as well as how each compares to related proposals from earlier...
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Legislators slogged through more conference committee meetings this week, debating the state budget. Most of the conversation in Health and Human Services committees has been focused on health care and disability services, with citizen activism disrupting one session. Child welfare issues have not risen to the surface of debates, but they remain very susceptible to the proposed budget cuts. From...
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Each year, the Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor (OLA) selects a handful of issues to study through its Program Evaluation Division. Child Protection Screening is one of seven issues selected for evaluation this year. The OLA is a nonpartisan office within the legislative branch. "The office's principal goal is to provide the Legislature, agencies, and the public with audit...
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Less than three weeks until the legislature has to adjoin, but there are huge distances to cover. The Governor called for the Senate and the House to put forth a single budget bill by May 6th, but that deadline was not reached. Budget conference committees continued to meet this week in an effort to resolve the differences between the House...
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Back into the swing of things, the legislature reconvened this week after a recess. There's very little consensus at the Capitol these days, but everyone seems to agree that there is a long way to go before a budget solution is reached. And time is beginning to run short. The Minnesota Council of Nonprofits writes very helpful, accessible and in-depth...
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Hey, Child Welfare community - I know you all have valuable expertise and lots of opinions to share, so why don't you consider attending this event? It's about the Saint Paul Promise Neighborhood, hosted with the help of the Children's Defense Fund of MN. Community Conversation-Help Build a Cradle-To-Career Network of Support For Our Kids Thursday, May 5 5:30 pm...
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On Monday April 18th, the bill known as the Family Reunification Act of 2011(HF 749) had a hearing in the Civil Law Committee. The discussion of the bill was fascinating and contentious, with very different views from people concerned about child well-being. You can listen here. The committee voted to pass the bill and refer to the Judiciary Committee. The...
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The MN Legislature is on recess this week in observance of religious holidays. During the break in action, we thought you might like to hear more about the Northstar bill. Most years, the MN Department of Human Services puts forth its own bill regarding child welfare policy. This stands separate from the main DHS bill - it shows just how...
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This week, the MN Legislature takes an extended break for Jewish and Christian holidays, so there's no new legislation or activity to report. Still, it was an exciting week for us here at the Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare. We hosted our 12th Annual Child Welfare conference. Each year it's free, viewed in person or streamed online across...
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We're so proud! In a time of budget crisis, our legislature is setting aside partisan politics and protecting some of Minnesota's most vulnerable. The Safe Harbor bill that we've been following is moving forward. It corrects problems in criminal law so that sexually exploited children are directed to support services rather than charged with crimes. The Star Tribune wrote a...
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This post will be updated with the upcoming hearings related to the Health and Human Services or the Conference Committee that is streamlining the HHS budget bill. We'll also keep a log at the bottom of this post so that you can watch video/listen to audio of the proceedings at a later date. Upcoming Hearings Thursday, May 12, 2011 -...
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The House passed the Health and Human Services Omnibus bill this week, SF760. Here are some of the key Child Welfare elements: Streamlining the Children and Community Services Act (CCSA), see line 30.21 Appropriation of $64.3 million for each biennium. For American Indian Child Welfare projects, see line 281.10 Subd. 14b. The amounts of the Children's Services Grants can be...
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Wednesday, April 6th, the full Minnesota House of Representatives voted on and passed the Health and Human Services Omnibus bill, SF760. The passage of the bill is a step toward major budget cuts to social service and health care programs across the state. For details of the debate, the vote, the bill's contents and next steps, you can read Minnesota...
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Monday April 4th was the 15th Annual Social Work Day at the Capitol. The local Fox 9 News covered the social workers' rally. Here's the short video: Social Workers' Rally Supports Dayton's Wealthy Tax: MyFoxTWINCITIES.com The MN Social Service Association put out a call to action. The full MN House, on April 6th, will begin debate on HF 927 (the...
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Social Work Day at the Capitol! Monday April 4th! Social workers have a lot to say about the major Health & Human Service policy and budget decisions at the capitol this session. Are you already planning to be there? Why don't you join in? Details about this important event here. Feeling down about the news coming out of the Capitol...
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A 3 minute update on the Senate's passage of the Health & Human Services Omnibus bill, with "deep cuts health, welfare programs": From Senator Hann, Chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee: "The Minnesota Senate passed the Health and Human Services Omnibus Budget Bill today following a rigorous floor debate. The Senate Republicans' proposal offers a 6 percent...
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Take a step back from the nitty-gritty of legislative season, and join CASCW in thinking about the impact of technology on the Child Welfare field. The Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare (CASCW) at the University of Minnesota will present our 12th Annual FREE Child Welfare conference, "Social Media, Smart Phones, and Safety: How Technology is Changing Child Welfare...
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It is a contentious week at the Capitol in the high-stakes budget debate. Health care is the main focus of the Health and Human Service discussions, since it comprises the majority of spending in that portion of our state's budget. Child Welfare elements of the bills appear to have moved through unchanged*. So that you don't have to scour the...
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Below are a few Child Welfare snippets of the HF927 Omnibus Budget Bill, which is being heard this week in the House Health and Human Service Finance Committee. The omnibus bill is enormous (2011_HF927DeleteAll.pdf). House Research did a bill summary that highlights a few areas - a little easier to digest than 350 pages (review the bill summary here). Three...
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Wednesday, March 23, is a major day for public testimony on the proposed state budget solutions regarding Health and Human Services. Of the long list of testifiers (90!), I have highlighted four that are closely related to Child Welfare: Lucinda Jesson, Commissioner, Department of Human Services Mary Regan, Executive Director, Minnesota Council of Child Caring Agencies Eric Ratzmann, Minnesota Association...
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This week is crunch time for budget decisions at the Capitol. As we learn of hearing schedules and budget decisions for the House and Senate, we'll keep this blog up-to-date. The House Health & Human Service Finance Committee HF927 Omnibus bill text and spread sheet are available to the public now on their website. More info will be forth coming....
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This week was interesting, but next week is sure to be busier! Why? There is a March 25th deadline for budget decisions, which will bring a flurry of activity next week. Child Welfare matters will arise in the House Health and Human Services Finance Committee, where the GOP budget bill will be unveiled on Tuesday, March 22. The committee will...
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There is a lot happening at the Capitol related to our field of Child Welfare! CASCW is keeping tabs on 40 bills that are related to child welfare, and watching 16 of these with a close eye. The majority of these bills have seen no action since they were introduced, when things start moving we'll update you. The focus now...
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Welcome back for another Child Welfare Week in Review! This week the US Supreme Court heard a case involving child abuse investigations at schools, regarding whether parent's consent is required before a child can be questioned at school by a child care worker or a police officer. Read mainstream media coverage, and in-depth legal analysis. In the MN House Health...
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As expected in a budget year, debates about spending continue to dominate this legislative session. So you think you can fix the Minnesota deficit? Give the budget your best shot with this online trial from MinnPost. Can you balance it? If you're reading this blog, chances are good that you have some opinions about the Child Welfare elements of the...
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Among many advocates who provided public testimony in the House Health and Human Services Finance Committee, two individuals spoke specifically about Child Welfare elements of the budget. This testimony took place on Wednesday, February 23, 2011. You can listen to the audio or view the video recordings at this link. The advocates who spoke about Child Welfare issues each have...
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Let's dig a little deeper into the Governor's budget recommendations, specifically the CCSA allocation and adoption assistance. The Children and Community Services Act is the bulk of the state's contribution to Child Protection. Since last year's reduction was passed as a one-time cut, and since the proposal to make last year's cuts to CCSA permanent were vetoed by the Governor,...
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This week, Governor Dayton released his budget proposal. Keep in mind that the legislature and the Governor are taking opposing approaches to resolving this budget deficit. So don't get too attached to the details within this budget, as it's very likely to change through the legislative process. That said, this link will take you to several resources about the Governor's...
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The Senate passed HF 130, the budget proposal cutting $900 million in state spending. This was a fast turnaround following the House passage of the bill late on 2/9. The bill was sent to the Governor, and he vetoed the bill within a couple hours of receiving it. You can read coverage here, here and here. And the Governor's veto...
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Yesterday afternoon was a busy one for Minnesota politics. The Senate passed HF 130, the budget proposal cutting $900 million in state spending. Read Senator Claire Robling's statement - she's the Senate Finance Chair, author of the Senate's companion bill to HF130 and a member of CASCW's Advisory Board. This was a pretty quick turnaround following the House passage of...
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Yesterday the House passed the first round of budget cuts on a 68-61 floor vote. Today, the Senate will vote on the same conference committee report. Though the timing isn't certain, it appears the floor vote will happen at 11:00 am. You can attend in person, or you can stream the vote online. While the bill is expected to pass,...
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House and Senate Conference Committee members worked fast to reach agreement on cuts of $1 billion dollars in state spending. As MPR News put it, "Child protection among losers in first round of budget cuts." The reductions to funding for Child and Community Service Assistance grants ($13.7 million a year, or 21%) have remained unchanged in recent weeks as the...
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A class of U of M School of Social Work students asked some great follow up questions to the earlier Funding 101 post. Here are the questions and responses. Thanks for your curiosity! Q: How does Minnesota compare, in terms of total Child Welfare expenditures, to other states? A: Minnesota spending is 14th highest out of all states, including Washington,...
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The Minnesota Senate approved a first round of budget cuts today, including permanent reductions to the state's funding of the Child Protection System. Here's a quick bit of coverage. If you've been reading this blog, this is same bill we've been covering for the last couple weeks. The budget proposal passed the House (HF 130), now the Senate (SF 60)....
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It's looking very likely that the Senate will pass the proposed budget cuts to Child Welfare funding, part of the $1 billion budget cut proposed and passed by the House last week. So just what does a $13.6 million reduction mean for Minnesota's Child Welfare system? There are a few ways to look at this. Below is a basic overview...
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Where to begin? This was a fast-paced week for policy decisions impacting the Child Welfare field. So fast-paced that the Minnesota State Legislature's website couldn't even keep up with hearings, amendments, schedules and votes. Sources like MN Public Radio and the MN Budget Project have had up-to-date information and analysis. As noted in previous entries, the state's contribution to Child...
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You probably heard that Child Welfare (Child Protection) funds were included in the $1 billion spending cuts proposed by the legislature last week*. Maybe you also heard that HF 128 passed out of committee, and was referred to Ways and Means. This means that bill moved forward, but the action isn't done. Currently, three bills are bouncing around with the...
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On January 18th, legislators in the MN House and Senate introduced bills (HF 128, HF 130 and SF 60) that propose substantial cuts to Child Welfare funding in the state. State dollars are 15% of child welfare funding in Minnesota, and are mostly allocated through the Children and Community Services Act (CCSA). These bills propose a cut of $19 million...
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Stay up-to-date on the social work-related policy at the Capitol this legislative session. Here, CASCW is tracking bills related to child well-being that impact your work and the people you serve. The intent of the blog is to provide child welfare stakeholders with up-to-date, non-partisan information on policy issues that impact child welfare practice in Minnesota. This is a blog...
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