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Presenters Jackie Crow Shoe; MN DHS Child Safety and Permanency Division Deb Moses; DHS/Chemical Health Division Carole Johnson; Minnesota Judicial Branch. Improving Outcomes for Parents with Alcohol and other Drug Problems in the Child Protection System 2007 Minnesota Fatherhood Summit.
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Presenters Jackie Crow Shoe; MN DHS Child Safety and Permanency Division Deb Moses; DHS/Chemical Health Division Carole Johnson; Minnesota Judicial Branch Improving Outcomes for Parents with Alcohol and other Drug Problems in the Child Protection System2007 Minnesota Fatherhood Summit
Presentation Objectives • Developing a collaboration between government agencies • Developing practical products to meet community needs • Integrating AOD services into existing systems • Sharing lessons learned from parents
Children’s Justice Initiative • A collaborative project between MN DHS and MN Judicial Branch to improve the processing and outcomes of child protection cases • Mission: To ensure that, in a fair and timely manner, abused and neglected children involved in the juvenile protection court system have safe, stable, permanent families.
Key Features • Seen “through the eyes of a child” • Role of judge in managing case • Importance of Permanency • Timelines as a priority • Integrated statewide
CJI-AOD Project • Under the umbrella of the Minnesota’s Children’s Justice Initiative • NCSACW In-Depth Technical Assistance • Project Team • State Advisory Committee • Core Team • courts, child safety, chemical health, county, parents, community provider • Pilot Counties • Mentor Counties - Itasca, Stearns • Ten Phase I Counties • Tribal engagement and involvement
CJI-AOD Project • Seen as a priority because of the nature of addiction and recovery related to child safety, well being and permanency needs • “Five Clocks” highlight challenge of competing timelines
The Mission of CJI-AOD To ensure that, in a fair and timely manner, abused and neglected children involved in juvenile protection court have safe, stable, permanent families by improving parental and family recovery from alcohol or other drug problems.
Minnesota’s Context • Total Population over 5 million; Child Population 1.3 million • State Supervised; County Administered Child Welfare System • Primarily locally funded • Governed by Reporting of Maltreatment to Minors Act 626.556 • 18-19,000 reports per year are accepted for a CP response • Almost half of all reports are made by school personnel and law enforcement Regardless of response path • Disproportionately involves poor, single mothers and their children and families of color • MN CPS objectives: • respond proportionately to the severity of the safety concern • enhance family engagement • promote early intervention and prevention • broaden community involvement
Differential Response System • 57.5% received family assessment ; 42.5% an investigation • Substantiation rate is 56% of all investigations • Consolidated Chemical Dependency Treatment Fund • 28,000 public pay clients • State funded – County Administered with a 15% match • Free market treatment system • Majority of child maltreatment being addressed is for neglect (65%)
Families who neglected more likely to experience multiple family issues, including alcohol and other drug issues and poverty. • Approximately 1/3 of all families receive services. • AOD concerns are seen in over half of families needing services. • Only 11% of all CP interventions result in a Juvenile Protection Court Intervention of placement out of the home.
Family Assessment Response for less serious cases No determination of maltreatment Comprehensive Strength-based community-focused Enhances Family Stability Focus is on safety through engagement Investigation Response for substantial child endangerment cases Did maltreatment occur? Are Child Protective Services Needed? Incident based with a focus on fact finding Forensic in nature; coordinated with law enforcement May be perceived as intrusive and adversarial by family MN Differential Response Continuum
The Five Clocks • MFIP • Child welfare system • Recovery process • Child development • Agency and staff timelines
Clock One: TANF Work must be found within 24 months, when benefits cease.
Clock Two: Child Welfare System • Six month reviews of parent’s progress towards becoming a safe caregiver of children who have been removed from their home. • A court hearing at 12 months and a petition to terminate parental rights if the child has been in out-of-home care for 15 of the prior 22 months.
Clock Three: The Recovery Process • Often takes longer than substance abuse treatment funding allows. • Good outcomes are contingent on adequate length of treatment. This may be incompatible with child welfare deadlines. • The recovery timetable can be summarized as “one day at a time, for the rest of your life.”
Clock Four: Child Development According to research on brain development, the developmental timetable that affects children, especially younger children, as they achieve or fail to achieve bonding and attachment during their first 18 months of life is critical. A child’s sense of time is different than an adult’s sense time. For children, the “clock” runs much slower.
Clock Five: Agency and Staff Response Time Agencies and their staff need to remember: • The clocks never stop. • The new child welfare and TANF time limits, combined with what is known about child development and child attachment and bonding demand a more …best interests of the child / parent / family centered practice than ever before. • Priorities must be made for the permanent funding of programs and resources for timely assessment and intervention for prenatally exposed and children who are exposed daily to the environmental and familial effects of alcohol and other drug use.
CJI-AOD: The Why and How • Now, more than ever, system collaboration is needed to improve outcomes for children • Achieving Better Outcomes • Important for personal growth, healthy emotional development, and positive sustained relationships of family members • Can reduce future child safety concerns • Can reduce treatment recidivism • Can reduce broader community consequences related to capacity, resources and cost
STEP 1: Using the 10-element Framework to Set Priorities and Objectives • Earlier engagement of parents in assessment, treatment and recovery • Improved practice through cross-system collaboration • Increased flexibility in individualized planning and treatment services • Improved training on overlap impact of AOD and Child Welfare concerns
STEP 2:Establishing Shared Values and Principles • Accountability: agencies cooperate and collaborate in order to establish the best outcomes • Partnerships: actively involve families and communities in decision-making and solution building • Service Delivery: assure fair and equitable access to early and effective interventions along the continuum of care • System Resources: dedicate staff and resources to assist with implementation of project recommendations
Cross-System Practice Focus • Acknowledge deficits but focus on identifying family competence and seek to re-create the circumstances that allow competence to flourish. • Collaboration between the “systems” and the family increases the likelihood of finding solutions. • Choices made by the family are more likely to be implemented than choices made without their collaboration.
Success is a result of respectful interactions which recognize family competence, family choice and are demonstrated by: • Respect and honesty • Fairness and equity • Solution-focused mutual accountability • Clear and transparent communication • Active mobilization of resources to remove barriers • Celebration of successes, however small
STEP 3: Review and Research • Statewide best practice inquiry • Eleven parent focus groups conducted across the State, including Leech Lake Band of Chippewa Reservation and MN Indian Women’s Resource Center • NCSACW database search • Internet research on evidence-based practices
Step 4: Analyze Emergent Themes • Suggested Engagement Strategies • Family and Community Needs • Cultural and Regional Dynamics • Service Delivery Issues • Communication and Information Sharing • Exit/Transition • Other Barriers and Challenges
Lessons Learned from Parents: Highlights • Use an approach that is collaborative, culturally competent, family-centered and strengths-based • The intervention was warranted at the time of occurrence in their lives – however services and/or the way they were delivered alienated the parent from wanting, believing and in some cases succeeding in making improvements with limited permanency time frames. • The encounters with each of the systems discouraged the parents from admitting their need for recovery or seeking the services needed for their families to become healthy.
Parents found themselves working through a seemingly endless, confusing and often conflicting stream of rules, requirements and paperwork. • Parents continually questioned how a system that is designed to help families justifies separating the family for the purposes of treatment and recovery. • Fathers expressed: • the need for reparation of the father-child relationship • inclusion in the intervention and recovery process • acknowledgement from professionals that they are important in the lives of their children.
Step 5: Product Development • Best Practice Tool Kit : 20 specific strategies identified to achieve improved outcomes for Minnesota’s families • Training Plan: Rolling out the tool kit at the county level • Sustainability Plan: Recommendations to State Policy Leaders • Evaluation Plan: Measuring success • Parent Partner Model: includes a Parent Partner Handbook and Research Summary
Samples of the Best Practice Strategies in the “Tool Kit” • Parent Mentors/Recovery Specialists • Parent mentors - work as a guide for parents working to enter and maintain recovery, they can help educate the family on child welfare concerns. • Recovery Specialists - facilitate immediate access to services by assisting the parent/family in navigating and removing barriers as it relates to treatment and recovery • Shared Family Care • designed to prevent out of home placement, allowing the entire family to be placed in a supervised setting while parent works on recovery • Family Dependency Treatment Court • Court based system combining criminal and juvenile protection matters to quickly identify and assess parental AOD issues with frequent court supervision.
Motivational Interviewing • training and client-centered, directive method for enhancing self-motivation to change by exploring and resolving ambivalence thus better engaging the parent in the treatment and recovery process. • Wellbriety - Culture of Healing • culturally specific training that applies the traditions of the American Indian culture to the healing and recovery from AOD issues. • Individualized AOD Services for Children • Developmentally appropriate interventions to address individual needs, based on comprehensive assessment
Father specific case planning Case planning should address the father’s needs in the same way that it addresses the mother’s. Cross-system training on interacting with fathers who have chemical health issues Improved Service Delivery to Fathers CP and AOD service providers can improve services to fathers by convening focus groups with fathers in recovery who have experience with the child protection system to identify barriers in their local system, and to elicit recommendations for constructively engaging fathers in the process. Father - Specific Brochure A comprehensive Know Your Rights and Responsibilities brochure for fathers involved with families with AOD issues should be developed and widely distributed. Support Groups for Fathers An integral component of service delivery should be support groups for fathers with opportunities for child interaction. Physical Surroundings That Embrace Fatherhood Are there positive messages in the public waiting and meeting areas – both verbal and non-verbal – about the importance of fathers in the lives of their children?
Next Steps: Implementation • Training Plan Implementation • Cross Systems Training Plan • October Kick off Conference • Implement best practice strategies at the local level with state technical assistance • Direct support and assistance to Mentor and Phase I Teams • Sustainability Plan • Improve communication and data sharing • Support best practices • Develop performance measurements and follow for trends to
Implement Evaluation Plan • Provides framework and sets out strategies for the systemic collection of information both regionally and statewide • Is MN reaching intended outcomes and implementation goals with respect to families with co-occurring issues related to chemical health and child welfare? • Developed in collaboration with the NCSACW, DHS-SSIS and Policy Coordinator, planning and programs supervisor, chemical health, Courts and a community stakeholder • Design Information technology supports (SACWIS) to document and support services while providing ongoing feedback about outcomes • State guidance on continual practice and system improvements
Closing Thoughts onSuccessful Partnering • Be Patient • Not every step is a success • Celebrate • Any and all progress should be acknowledged • Engage • Enlist the energy and wisdom of all • Be Consistent • Use a parallel process based on mutually agreed upon principles • Nurture all relationships with compassion and honesty to build trust and confidence
Further Information Children’s Justice Initiative http://www.courts.state.mn.us/page/?pageID=197&subSite=childrensJustice Shared Values and Principals document Summary of Parent Partner Focus Groups Research Report on Parent Mentor/Leader Models CJI-AOD Project Members: Jackie Crow Shoe, Social Service Program Consultant DHS-Child Safety and Permanency Division (651)431-4676 email@example.com Carole Johnson, CJI Project Specialist Supreme Court Administrators Office (651)296-2269 firstname.lastname@example.org Deborah Moses, Operations Manager DHS-Chemical Health Division (651)431-3251 email@example.com