Racial disproportionality is ubiquitous within the child welfare system. Families of color are more likely to be investigated by child protective services, and children of color are overwhelmingly more likely to be placed in foster care. There are myriad causes for this disproportionality, including racial bias and system factors.
Child welfare professionals are on the frontlines of working with families who have been affected by racism, both within the child welfare system and beyond. Therefore, it is essential that child welfare professionals are supported in identifying the attitudes or stereotypes that may affect decision-making in their work with diverse populations. Recognizing implicit bias enables child welfare professionals to consciously make more equitable decisions, thereby creating more equitable child welfare practices. Below, find resources to support child welfare and related professionals in recognizing individual biases and dismantling systemic racism.
Black Lives Matter: Anti-Racism Resources for Social Workers and Therapists
Social Work Career
Provides resources to support antiracism practices within child welfare and related fields, including discussions about effectively being an ally and methods for mitigating racism at the systems level.
How Race, Ethnicity, Culture, and Identity Impact Treatment of Trauma [Webinar]
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (2020)
Shares the experiences of five trauma therapists who work with children and families experiencing complex developmental trauma, in part due to their experiences with race, ethnicity, culture, and identity. Viewing this webinar requires a free registration.
Intersectionality in Child Welfare (PDF - 271 KB)
National Child Welfare Workforce Institute (2021)
Illustrates the framework of intersectionality and emphasizes the importance of social identities and how they overlap across systems of discrimination and privilege.
Race and Poverty Bias in the Child Welfare System: Strategies for Child Welfare Practitioners
Child Law Practice Today
Presents strategies for addressing systemic bias in the child welfare system, including raising awareness of individual biases and embracing diversity among practitioners.
Racial Equity Resources
National Child Welfare Workforce Institute
Presents tools, guides, assessments, and curricula designed to dismantle implicit biases and create more equitable child welfare practice.
Social Work So White With Rachel Cargle [Video]
Discusses the intersection of white supremacy and social work. This video includes recommendations for integrating antiracism into social work coursework and casework.