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The Ties That Bind: Strengthening, and Reducing Racial Disparities in, Kinship Foster Care in Massachusetts

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute

MLRI is pleased to share with you the Massachusetts Law Reform Institute’s new KIDS COUNT report on Kinship Foster Care:  "The Ties That Bind: Strengthening, and Reducing Racial Disparities in, Kinship Foster Care in Massachusetts" 

Massachusetts has been an early national leader and pioneer in its commitment to placing children with their extended families when children must be removed from their parents. However, our kinship foster care placement rates are now low in relation to the rest of the country, and are particularly low for African American and Latino children. 

Over the past seven years the Commonwealth has made real progress, with kinship placement rates increasing from 20 percent to 28 percent for children removed from their homes. But Massachusetts lags behind other states that have been able to place a greater number of children, particularly children of color, with members of their extended families.

This report describes the evidence on the value of kin placements and examines the policies the state has been using to increase the number of kids placed with kin. It concludes by providing a detailed set of commonsense solutions to help the Department of Children and Families increase kinship care overall and make sure that all children, regardless of their race or ethnicity, have the same chance to overcome trauma and thrive. The report also incorporates data from a MassBudget KIDS COUNT analysis, also being released today, that describes the trends in kinship placements overall and for children from different racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Click the "go to website" link below to download the report from MLRI's website.

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