Hard Choices: Caring for the Children of Mentally Ill Parents

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Center for New York City Affairs and the Center for an Urban Future

This edition of Child Welfare Watch, a joint publication of the Center for New York City Affairs and the Center for an Urban Future, highlights the problems facing mentally ill parents, many of whom have their children taken away and placed in foster care.

The report finds that many parents with psychiatric problems are capable of caring for their children, but lack the resources to do so. One section explains the process of determining whether a mother is fit to care for her child, a key procedure considering that in fiscal 2008, about 56 percent of the abuse and neglect cases in city family court that involved allegations of mental illness resulted in foster care placement. The report finds that psychological evaluations are done subjectively, often resulting in misdiagnoses. Free, 28 pages. (212) 229-5400, www.newschool. edu/milano/nycaffairs/documents/ CWW-vol17.pdf.