UNH Research Connection

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Friday, May 3, 2013 - 1:16pm

The Center for Professional Excellence in Child Welfare is a part of the University of New Hampshire's Social Work department.  One of the benefits of CPE's affiliation with UNH is our ability to draw upon and share the faculty's research with DCYF.  CPE is proud to be able to dedicate this space to spotlighting faculty publications of interest to child welfare and juvenile justice professionals.  

In this edition, we're happy to feature the abstract of a study conducted by Dr. Vernon B. Carter.  Dr. Carter is an associate professor in the UNH Social Work department.  He received his MSW degree at UNH and his Ph.D. in Social Work from Boston College.  Much of Dr. Carter's research focuses on the interaction between American Indians and the child welfare system and the disproportionate involvement of child welfare systems in the family lives of American Indians and Alaskan Natives.

Prediction of Placement into Out-of-home Care for American Indian/Alaskan Natives Compared to Non-Indians

This article is concerned with both the rates of children's removal from American Indian and Alaskan Native homes and the most prevalent complicating factors faced by these families.  The study was published in 2009 in Children and Youth Services Review.

ABSTRACT: Nationally representative child welfare data collected between October of 1999 and December 2000 were utilized to explore those variables that would predict the likelihood of American Indian/Alaskan Native children being placed into out-of-home care compared to non-Indian families.  In comparison to non-Indian children, American Indian/Alaskan Native children came from poorer homes, and had caregivers with greater mental health and alcohol abuse service needs compared to non-Indian caregivers.  Possible bias by child protective services workers may have affected the decision-making that led to the removal of American Indian/Alaskan Native children from their homes.  Acknowledgement of past and present instances of racism in the child welfare system can lead to a decrease of American Indian/Alaskan Native children being placed into out-of-home care.

Carter, Vernon B. (2009). Prediction of Placement into Out-of-home Care for American Indian/Alaskan Natives Compared to Non-Indians. Children and Youth Services Review, 31, 840-846. DOI: 10.1016/j.childyouth.2009.03.006

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Ben Martin