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ERIC Number: ED536815
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jan
Pages: 152
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
For the Welfare of Children: Lessons Learned from Class Action Litigation
Meltzer, Judith, Ed.; Joseph, Rachel Molly, Ed.; Shookhoff, Andy, Ed.
Center for the Study of Social Policy
This series of papers brings together distinguished experts writing on the use of class action litigation to reform public child welfare systems. It is an effort to tease out of four decades of experience in this work, the factors that increase the likelihood that litigation will result in successful system reform. This publication is an outgrowth of a series of conversations among a diverse group of people who have been involved in such litigation--from plaintiffs' lawyers who have filed these cases and agency attorneys who have defended them, to child welfare administrators who have managed systems involved in litigation and technical assistance providers who work with them, to foundation representatives who have helped negotiate settlement agreements and experts appointed by the court to monitor and report on agency performance under those agreements. The papers in this series are presented in two sections. Section I includes papers that address a specific stage or aspect of child welfare litigation, drawing on experience in particular cases, but presenting a more general discussion. Section II focuses more deeply on specific cases from which the authors draw lessons based on their role and case experience. Contents of this publication include: (1) A Powerful Route to Reform or When to Pull the Trigger: The Decision to Litigate (Marcia Robinson Lowry); (2) Structuring Litigation-Driven Child Welfare Reform for Success (Paul Vincent); (3) Role of Foundations in Child Welfare Litigation (Steven D. Cohen); (4) Reflections on the Role of the Monitor in Child Welfare Litigation (Andy Shookhoff); (5) The Use of Data in Child Welfare Litigation (Jerry Milner); (6) Qualitative Case Review in a Child Welfare Lawsuit (Kathleen Noonan); (7) "Engagement is the Reform": The Role of Youth, Foster Parents and Biological Parents in Child Welfare Litigation (Erik Pitchal); (8) Establish the Finish Line at the Start: The Importance of a Disengagement Plan (Grace Lopes); (9) Is Child Welfare Class Action Litigation a Viable Tool to Achieve Race Equity? (Karen Baynes-Dunning); (10) Litigation Leads to Sustainable Reform: A Case Study of Utah's Success (John O'Toole and Leecia Welch); (11) Child Welfare Settlement Compliance in the State of Kansas: Conditions for Success (Teresa Markowitz); (12) New Jersey: A Case Study and Five Essential Lessons for Reform (Kevin Ryan, Eileen Crummy, Molly Armstrong and Lisa Taylor); (13) Perspectives of a Child Welfare Administrator: Managing Change While Under a Consent Decree/Court Order (Uma Ahluwalia); (14) New York City's Administration for Children's Services Reform Effort: When Solutions Are the Problem (Linda I. Gibbs); (15) From a Commissioner's Perspective: The Double-Edged Challenges of Managing Under a Consent Decree (Page B. Walley); and (16) Life Under a Consent Decree: A Conversation with Viola Miller (Viola Miller). Individual essays contain endnotes. [Preface written by Judith Meltzer, Rachel Molly Joseph and Andy Shookhoff.]
Center for the Study of Social Policy. 1575 Eye Street NW Suite 500, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-371-1565; Fax: 202-371-1472; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Collected Works - General
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Annie E. Casey Foundation
Authoring Institution: Center for the Study of Social Policy
Identifiers - Location: Kansas; New Jersey; New York; Utah