From: Abdul Muhammad, ISU Department of Political Science
To: Dr. Mack Shelley, Instructor; Policy and Program Evaluation
Subject: Addressing Disproportionality and Disparate Outcomes within Iowa’s Child Welfare System
Date: February 6, 2018
Iowa leads the nation as one of the worst states for the disproportionate representation of African American, Latino, and Native American children in the child welfare system (National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, 2011). Along with the rest of the nation, the Iowa child welfare community has gone from simply acknowledging the problem of racial and ethnic disproportionality and disparity…show more content… It also outlines strategies that can assist child welfare administrators, program managers, community stakeholders, and policymakers with addressing these issues at critical decision points throughout a child’s journey through the child welfare process, or life of the case (e.g., intake, assessment, service provision, court involvement, out-of-home placement, permanency, reunification, and safe case…show more content… Families/children of color: Families or children other than those who are non-Hispanic, White-only (e.g., Black, Hispanic, Native American)
When reviewing data pertaining to race and ethnicity, it is important to take into account the inherent difficulties collecting and analyzing these data. The following are examples of those difficulties:
• Race and ethnicity do not have quantifiable definitions (U.S. Census Bureau, 2013). People may identify their race or ethnicity based on a number of factors (e.g., family and social environment, historical or sociopolitical definitions, personal experience). The definitions for a particular race or ethnicity may change from study to study.
• How people define their own race or ethnicity can change over time. Researchers found that more than 10 million people changed their race or ethnicity selections from the 2000 census to the 2010 census (Cohn,