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Abusive PoliciesHow the American Child Welfare System Lost Its Way$
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Mical Raz

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469661216

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469661216.001.0001

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From Child Welfare to Child Removal

From Child Welfare to Child Removal

(p.73) Chapter Four From Child Welfare to Child Removal
Abusive Policies

Mical Raz

University of North Carolina Press

Chapter Four focuses on the removal of children from their homes and placement in substitute care such as foster homes and institutions, which increased notably in the mid 1970s. Furthermore, the removal of large numbers of Native American children from their homes captured the attention of civil rights activists, who helped set the stage for the 1978 Indian Child Welfare Act. ICWA helped restore child welfare and placement decisions to tribal jurisdiction. Yet for African American families in urban cities, who were also disproportionately removed from their parents and spent longer in substitute care, there was little respite. African American children were not afforded similar protections as those Native American children and their families had gained. In fact, most debates focused on the need to increase adoption, rather than reduce foster care placement. No one cautioned that the expansion of child abuse definitions might be leading to unnecessary child removal. This chapter examines the processes leading to the over-removal of urban African American children, and the shift in discourse towards incentivizing adoption.

Keywords:   African American, Native American, Children, Indian Child Welfare Act (1978), Child Removal, Urban, Substitute Care, Foster Care, Adoption

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