Additional Federal Action Could Help States Address Challenges in Providing Services to Children and Families

U.S. Government Accountability Office

Despite substantial federal and state investment, states have had difficulty ensuring the safety, well-being and permanency of children in foster care – particularly in the wake of natural disasters. This report examines the child welfare issues that states rank as most urgently in need of resolution. It also reviews initiatives taken by states to address those issues and federal actions in support of states’ efforts to develop child welfare “disaster plans.”

States report that their most pressing problems are inadequate levels of mental health and substance abuse services, a shortage of case workers and difficulty finding homes for children with special needs. Free. 34 pages. (202) 512-3000,


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