The Scholar: St. Mary's Law Review on Race and Social Justice


Aimee Corbin


Expanding financial assistance to kinship placements can reduce disproportionality between racial minorities in Child Protective Services (CPS) custody. Statistics show that nationally, CPS removes a disproportionate number of minority children compared to non-minorities. CPS typically places a child in substitute care when that child is removed from their home, including kinship placement. Kinship placement is defined as the process by which children are placed in the care of relatives or close family friends. The government provides a significantly larger budget for foster care than for kinship placement. Kinship advocates, however, argue that foster placement—the placement in the care of a stranger—may not coincide with the best interests of the child. The current landscape of child disproportionality is aggravated by a system burdened with financial difficulties. Kinship caregivers are affected by this burden; and until there is a solution, the overrepresentation of minorities—specifically amongst African-American children in the welfare system—will continue. This Comment advocates the proposition that disproportionality rates can be reduced if more government funding is allocated to support temporary kinship placements. While government funding is available to licensed foster care homes, current legislation does not offer the equivalent government aid to temporary kinship providers. A proposed solution to this problem is the kinship care placement option. Expanding foster care payment to non-licensed (non-verified) kinship homes is one way to alleviate the financial burden. Family members should be afforded the same financial benefits granted to licensed foster homes without having to go through the nuances of the foster home approval process. Through increased financial support the number of kinship placements can increase, which in turn, will decrease the disproportionality of minority children in non-relative foster placements.

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The Scholar: St. Mary's Law Review on Race and Social Justice

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St. Mary's University School of Law



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