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Substance Abuse and Child Welfare

  Informational & Practice Publications, Resources, & Tools    
  • Guidance to the States: Recommendations for Developing Family Drug Court Guidelines 
    The Center for Children and Family Futures (CCFF) released this publication, prepared by the Office of Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), which provides guidance for local and state policymakers and practitioners to implement best practices in providing effective family drug court (FDC) services.  Well-functioning FDCs bring together substance abuse treatment (in lieu of incarceration), mental health, and social services agencies with the court and attorneys to meet the diverse needs of high-risk families in which parental substance use disorders contribute to child maltreatment. (May 2013)
  • CMCS Informational Bulletin on Prevention and Early Identification of Mental Health and Substance Use Conditions in Children 
    The Medicaid program provides coverage to 27 million children under age 18 in the United States. A core component of this coverage is the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit, which ensures that the health care needs of children and youth are addressed to maximize their growth and development. Prevention and early identification of health conditions, which is a key component of EPSDT, promotes positive health outcomes and can reduce health care costs across an individual’s lifespan. The Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services (CMCS) has issued this Informational Bulletin to help inform states about resources available to help them meet the needs of children under EPSDT, specifically with respect to mental health and substance use disorder services. (March 2013)
  • Promising Practices Toolkit: Working with Drug Endangered Children and Their Families 
    This toolkit was developed by the Federal Interagency Task Force on Drug Endangered Children. The DEC Task Force Federal Partnerships Subcommittee conducted an assessment of promising practices in the field and of training modules provided by federal, state, local, tribal, and community-based providers across the country. This toolkit is a compilation of many of those practices, separated into three categories: (1) increasing DEC awareness, (2) fostering community collaboration, and (3) creating a more effective response. The intent of this toolkit is to provide guidance and resources to professionals in identifying, responding to, and serving drug endangered children. The Task Force is committed to identifying ways to better serve and protect drug endangered children by building partnerships on the federal, state, tribal, and local levels. For each practice identified, the toolkit provide information about the practice (what is working), how the practice can be helpful (why it works), and resources to assist in implementing the practice in your community (how to get started). (May 2011)
  • Parental Substance Use and the Child Welfare System (Factsheet)
    Parental substance use continues to be a serious issue in the child welfare system. Maltreated children of parents with substance use disorders often remain in the child welfare system longer and experience poorer outcomes than other children (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services [HHS], 1999). Addressing the multiple needs of these children and families is challenging. This factsheet from the Child Welfare Information Gateway provides a brief overview of some of the issues confronting families affected by parental substance use who enter the child welfare system, and it examines some of the service barriers as well as the innovative approaches child welfare agencies have developed to best meet the needs of these children and families. (January 2009) 
  • A Guide to Evidence-Based Practices on the Web
    The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration provides this Web Guide to assist the public with simple and direct connections to Web sites that contain information about interventions to prevent and/or treat mental and substance use disorders. The Web Guide provides a list of Web sites that contain information about specific evidence-based practices (EBPs) or provide comprehensive reviews of research findings.


  Research & Reports    
  • Children Living with Substance-Dependent or Substance-Abusing Parents: 2002 to 2007
    Statistics from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) illustrate the breadth of the parental substance use problem. According to SAMHSA's National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), more than 1 in 10 children were living in homes with substance-dependent or substance-abusing parents between 2002 and 2007. This issue of The NSDUH Report examines the number of children living with substance-dependent or substance-abusing parents, including biological, step-, adoptive, and foster children under 18 years of age who were living with one or both parents at the time of the survey interview. Data show that more than 8.3 million children (11.9%) lived with at least one parent who was dependent on or abused alcohol or an illicit drug during the previous year. Alcohol abuse was more prevalent than drug abuse among parents, and fathers were more likely to be abusers than were mothers. These data highlight the broad need for prevention, support, and intervention services for children and families. (April 2009)


  Training & Curricula    
  • Substance Abuse: Working with Families During Case Planning and Relapse 
    The modules of this training from the Georgia Department of Human Services addresses the following: The Language of Substance Abuse; Methamphetamine: The Newest Threat; Addiction – A Brain Disease; Behavioral Characteristics of Substance Abusers; A Family Disease; Treatment; and, Moving the Family Towards Change. See the Participant Guide and Trainer’s Guide Outline. (2009)
  • Recovering Together Program
    These materials from Clarity Counseling include Women's Curriculum, Children's Curriculum, Materials and video Facilitator's Presentation. RTP is a is a year-long therapeutic and educational program for mothers and their children, serving mothers who need help with both child maltreatment and substance abuse issues. Staffed by a multi-disciplinary team, RTP uses culturally appropriate and theory-driven treatment methods that are creatively designed for women and children's special needs. The RTP design includes advocacy and case management services for families. These approaches were selected based on a literature review completed before the initial design of the RTP program and continued throughout the 3 years of field testing, formative evaluation, and modifications of the original model.

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Last updated 8/18/14