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Strengthening Families: What Role Can Courts Play in Upstream Family Preservation?

Event Dates

Courts can have a positive impact on families affected by the opioid crisis, but traditionally that role has been reactive, occurring after a dependency petition is filed.

Preventative, upstream approaches can decrease the negative impacts on children, decrease the load on formalized systems, and help families stay together while they heal.

In working with families at risk for child welfare system involvement, there is a valuable judicial leadership role for the courts within the community. There is also an increasingly recognized role for courts and judges in working with individual at-risk families prior to petition and even prior to child welfare agency involvement. Further, as courts are evaluating their practices in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and taking a critical look at reengineering their roles, practices, and policies, there are opportunities for courts to strengthen their collaborative roles within their communities to help families at risk.

This webinar will highlight two jurisdictions - Tennessee and Birmingham, Alabama - and the upstream and pre-petition work that their courts have engaged in to better serve families at risk of child welfare system involvement.

Date Created: February 3, 2021