Public Policy Archives - National Wraparound Initiative (NWI)

Why Youth Run from Foster Care

October 24, 2022 | NWI

Teens who run from foster care want to connect with their families and be “normal,” according to a new study. While this is not the only reason that teens choose to leave foster care without anyone’s knowledge, it is a driving factor. And because of this, finding ways to keep foster kids in connection with their families or even in placement with siblings, may go a long way toward decreasing the number of foster kids who ultimately become at risk by making the decision to run away.

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Expanded Safety Net Drives Drop in Child Poverty

October 24, 2022 | NWI

With little public notice and accelerating speed, child poverty fell by 59 percent from 1993 to 2019, according to a comprehensive new analysis that shows the critical role of increased government aid.

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Connecticut Reduces Foster Care by a Third

October 24, 2022 | NWI

Connecticut has shrunk its foster care population by nearly a third in the past three years, signaling a shift toward keeping families together whenever possible – a strategy implemented by Vannessa Dorantes, the first African American commissioner in the agency’s history.

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Winning Youth Essays on Mental Health

October 24, 2022 | NWI

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) announces 15 awardees for the 2022 Speaking Up about Mental Health! This Is My Story Essay Contest. The contest seeks to start conversations about mental health and encourage young people to access help for mental health issues. Read the winning essays now!

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How to Address the Child Therapist Shortage

September 23, 2022 | NWI

There is a nationwide shortage of mental health professionals, but it’s especially acute for children and teenagers. What are some proven strategies for addressing it?

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The Expanded Role of Telehealth for Behavioral Health

June 13, 2022 | NWI

At its pandemic peak, telehealth represented 13% of outpatient visits between March and August of 2020. As in-person care resumed, telehealth began to represent a smaller share of outpatient care (8% between March and August 2021). While many continue to envision an expanded role for telehealth in the delivery of care following the pandemic, there remains considerable uncertainty in what services will be available, where and how providers will be able to practice, how benefits will be structured, and how providers will be paid.

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Impact on Behavioral Health of Cash Transfers to Families of Children in Poverty

June 13, 2022 | NWI

New research asks whether direct cash payments to people living in poverty, particularly for households with children, effectively improve child development outcomes into adulthood. About 20% of U.S. American children grow up in poverty, and family income during early childhood is strongly associated with educational attainment and other social and economic outcomes. A cash transfer during infancy can have profound and long-lasting effects, including educational, behavioral, and economic or labor market advantages.

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Utilizing Black Families’ Cultural Assets

May 13, 2022 | NWI

This publication is part of a broader effort to build a deeper understanding of the diversity of Black families, contextualize their experiences within systems and institutions, and produce evidence to inform policies and practices that promote their well-being in the twenty-first century.

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Youth Incarceration in the United States

February 24, 2022 | NWI

This infographic from the Annie E. Casey Foundation shows that public agencies made enormous progress reducing youth incarceration between 1995 and 2019, reflecting the deep declines in juvenile arrests over the same period. However, some harmful practices remained stubbornly entrenched, such as an overreliance on incarceration once youth are referred to the juvenile justice system, especially for Black and Native American youth.

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Shadow Foster Care

January 21, 2022 | NWI

Over the past decade, states have increasingly institutionalized “hidden” foster care, when caseworkers persuade parents to send their children to live with someone they know, often by threatening a foster placement if they refuse. Unlike the foster system, this shadow system is not designed to protect children or to support caregivers.

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