Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Saturday, October 30, 2021

With Proposed Reauthorization of Federal Child Abuse Legislation, Researchers Make the Case to Better Help Substance-exposed Infants

From University of Connecticut Today:

The proposed reauthorization of the federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, also known as CAPTA – the foundational child abuse prevention legislation in the United States – has the potential to drastically and positively impact infants exposed to drugs and alcohol in utero.

But according to researchers at the University of Connecticut, the University of Southern California, and the Vanderbilt University Medical Center, policymakers and administrators will need to focus on CAPTA’s implementation to correct the shortcomings of the past and to achieve a public health approach to addressing the needs of substance-exposed infants.

The last revisions of CAPTA provisions concerning substance-exposed infants happened in 2010 and 2016, but were underfunded and slowed state-level adoption. 

[W]hile placing children in foster care should be avoided whenever possible, the number of infants and young children removed from their families for parental substance use has increased over the past decade, suggesting that additional changes are needed to CAPTA to help support families.

Read more here

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