Fiscal reform in child welfare generally focuses on improving outcomes for children, youth, and families; controlling costs; and reallocating resources to other services. The methods may initiate innovations in spending, such as flexible funding and blended funding strategies, or privatization of services including the use of managed care models. The following resources address fiscal reform efforts, including State and local examples.
Child Welfare Policy Primer: A Guide for Advocates, Policymakers, and Others Interested in Child Welfare Policy Reform (PDF - 511 KB)
First Focus (2017)
Offers an overview of the Federal child welfare system, including funding streams and an overview of key trends in the field. It also provides resources for those who want to dig deeper into child welfare issues. A section on page 13 covers financing reform.
Family First Legislation
National Conference of State Legislatures (2020)
Offers information on new legislation that has been introduced in States across the country since the passage of the Family First Prevention Services Act.
Family First Prevention Services Act: Historic New Reforms for Child Welfare
Children's Defense Fund
Includes summaries, reports, and resources relating to the Family First Prevention Services Act of 2018. The legislation helps reform child welfare by putting an emphasis on prevention, keeping children safe with their families, and ensuring children that are placed in out-of-home care are placed in the least restrictive, most family-like setting available.
Moving Forward Child Welfare Finance Reform: The Family First Act (PDF - 254 KB)
Children's Defense Fund (2016)
Describes how the Family First Act would reform child welfare financing providing for dollars to be used on prevention investments.
State and local examples
Child Welfare Financing in Colorado: Current Landscape and Recommendations
Rosinsky, Fischer, Blazey, & Efetevbia (2019)
Provides an overview of child welfare funding in Colorado including funding streams and recent changes related to child welfare financing. The resource ends with recommendations for finance reform in the State.
Casey Family Programs (2019)
Presents a look at State facts regarding children in care and how money is invested in foster care compared to preventive and permanency services. The resource also examines how States can make smarter investments and details how the Family First Prevention Services Act provides States and Tribes with an opportunity to target new Federal funding to put toward preventive services.