If we cared about the harm of separating children from their parents, we’d be far less likely to do it. If we were serious about ending racial disparity, we would see it decline sharply. The reality is there has been little meaningful action to do what’s needed to address either, despite platitudes offered and words in common use. Our behaviors as a field remain largely the same as they have always been, as do the laws that govern us. Neither have caught up with what we know is right.
The data and facts speak for themselves: a deeply entrenched commitment to mandatory reporting; millions of unnecessary calls to child abuse hotlines; traumatic investigations; a shallow allotting for family preservation; stagnant child removal rates; constant pushes for more foster homes; unnecessary and prolonged separation of children from their parents; reasonable and active efforts seldom made; and intractable racial disproportionality-even in places heralded for reducing the number of kids in care.
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