Causes of Disproportionality
Resources and information in this section explore the various causes of disproportionality, including State and local examples.
The Racial Disproportionality Movement in Child Welfare: False Facts and Dangerous Directions
Harvard Law School Faculty Scholarship Series, 26, 2009
Explores whether Black children are disproportionately victimized by maltreatment and in need of child protective services, and if they are removed at rates proportionate to their maltreatment rates.
Racial Disproportionality, Race Disparity, and Other Race-Related Findings in Published Works Derived from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (PDF - 1,497 KB)
Casey-CSSP Alliance for Racial Equity in Child Welfare & Casey Family Programs (2008)
Draws on studies of data gathered during the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being and examines child welfare in the context of race and ethnicity.
The Racial Geography of Child Welfare [Video]
Ellis & Roberts (2008)
Discusses the overwhelming number of Black children in foster care and how it is a result of racial bias.
Synthesis of Research on Disproportionality in Child Welfare: An Update (PDF - 535 KB)
Casey Family Programs (2006)
Explores child maltreatment and disproportionality, the role race plays at various decision-making stages in child welfare, the extent of racially disparate treatment in child welfare, and how other social systems contribute to disproportionality in child welfare.
Understanding the Geospatial Relationship of Neighborhood Characteristics and Rates of Maltreatment for Black, Hispanic, and White Children
Freisthler, Bruce, & Needell
Social Work: A Journal of the National Association of Social Workers, 52(1), 2007
Presents the results of a study examining how neighborhood characteristics are associated with rates of child maltreatment for Black, Hispanic, and White children.
State and local examples
An Evaluation of Factors Related to the Disproportionate Representation of Children of Color in Santa Clara County's Child Welfare System
San Jose State University/College of Social Work/Child Welfare Research Team (2004)
Identifies the primary factors associated with the disproportionate representation of children of color in the Santa Clara County Child Welfare System.
Race Equity Review: Findings from a Qualitative Analysis of Racial Disproportionality and Disparity for African American Children and Families in Michigan's Child Welfare System (PDF - 1,095 KB)
Center for the Study of Social Policy (2009)
Presents research and findings of institutional features that contribute to racial disproportionality and disparity, and recommendations for change.
Report to the Legislature on the Study of Outcomes for African American Children in Minnesota's Child Protection System (PDF - 549 KB)
Minnesota Department of Human Services/Children's Services Administration (2002)
Study of why African-American children in Minnesota are disproportionately represented in out-of-home care.