Innovative Approaches to Disproportionality in the Child Welfare System In Fresno County: A Qualitative Exploration of Cultural Brokers and Parent Partners
Marcus Crawford, MSW, Ph.D., Sarah Carr, MSW, James Borunda, MSW

The problem of disproportionate representation of minority youth in systems care has been examined not as an aberration of the system but as an artifact of it. Cultural Brokers is an innovative program in Fresno County that intervenes during Child Protective Service (CPS) investigations to prevent out of home placement for African American youth. The Broker works with CPS and families to find alternatives to foster care placements. Parent Partners (or Partners) work with families whose children have been removed from the home and partner with the parents to assist them in making the changes needed for reintegration to occur. This qualitative exploration of the Cultural Brokers program sought to understand how the programs works from the perspective of the Brokers and Partners involved with the families. Individual interviews were conducted with each Broker and Partner to assess their understanding of their role within the child welfare system. Four themes emerged as we analyzed the data from interviews with the Brokers and Partners: building bridges, successes, trauma, and shared experiences.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jssw.v10n1a1