Child Welfare


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Optimizing Child Welfare Financing

In 2018, child welfare agencies spent $33 billion to promote and protect the welfare of children and youth who were at risk of, or were victims of, maltreatment. This webinar will cover an analysis of this complex financing system and offer insight into how each state’s unique funding composition determines what services are available to children and families.


Happy Smiling Family

Disproportionality and Race Equity in Child Welfare

Check out NCSL’s updated resource addressing overrepresentation of Black and Native American children in child welfare systems. Explore state and federal actions and consider recommendations for addressing this important issue.

Map Making


Child Welfare


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Teens in Foster Care: Challenges and Solutions

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services latest “Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System” says more than 430,000 people were in foster care in the last fiscal year. About a quarter of those in the system were teenagers. On this episode of “Our American States,” we talk with two state legislators who have first-hand knowledge of foster care and are actively involved in shedding light on this topic.


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COVID-19: Child Welfare Resources

Access four resource guides for state legislators: COVID-19 and Child Welfare Caseworkers, COVID-19 and Congregate Care Facilities, COVID-19 and Foster and Kinship Caregivers, COVID-19 and Older Youth in the Child Welfare System. NCSL staff will update this information regularly, so check back often.


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Supporting Foster Parents

This page contains information for state legislators about how they can become involved in helping find more foster parents for the more than 437,000 U.S. children and youth in foster care, a situation exacerbated by the opioid and substance abuse crisis.



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Child Welfare Database

Explore the child welfare legislation enacted between 2012-2019, including topics such as child protection, kinship care, foster care, services for older youth, mental and behavioral health and more.