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ERIC Number: EJ805138
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 9
ISSN: ISSN-0009-4021
Measuring Racial Disparity in Child Welfare
Shaw, Terry V.; Putnam-Hornstein, Emily; Magruder, Joseph; Needell, Barbara
Child Welfare, v87 n2 p23-36 2008
Overrepresentation of certain racial/ethnic groups in the foster care system is one of the most troubling and challenging issues in child welfare today. In response, many states have started reporting outcomes by race and ethnicity to identify disproportionately high rates of system contact. The identification of disproportional representation is the first step in developing targeted strategies to address disproportionality--highlighting where resources should be directed and guiding future research. However, present and future efforts to address disproportionality must be accompanied by statistically sound and meaningful methods of measurement. In this article, we argue for the adoption of a relative rate measure of representation--a "Disparity Index"--as the primary instrument for assessing racial disparity in child welfare. (Contains 4 tables and 3 figures.)
Child Welfare League of America. P.O. Box 932831, Atlanta, GA 31193-2831. Tel: 800-407-6273; Tel: 770-280-4164; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California