Legal Representation of At-Risk Children
In October 2009, the U.S. Children’s Bureau named the University of Michigan Law School as the National Quality Improvement Center on the Representation of Children in the Child Welfare System (QIC-ChildRep). The QIC-ChildRep was charged with gathering, developing and communicating knowledge on child representation and also with promoting consensus on the role of the child’s legal representative. In 2010, the University of Michigan Law School chose Chapin Hall as its evaluation partner to test the impacts of an intervention designed to improve attorney practice in selected counties in Georgia and throughout Washington State. The final evaluation report is available here. Additional information gathered by the QIC-ChildRep is available on its website, www.improvechildrep.org.
The National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect (NDACAN) has accepted the datasets Chapin Hall collected as part of the evaluation to be part of its national archive of child welfare data. During 2016, Chapin Hall and NDACAN researchers will work to de-identify attorney survey and child outcome administrative data for use in future research.
There are several articles resulting from the QIC-ChildRep investment that are available or will be forthcoming:
Orlebeke, B., Zinn, A., Duquette, D., & Zhou, X. (2015). Characteristics of attorneys representing children in child welfare cases. Family Law Quarterly, 49(3).
Zinn, A., Orlebeke, B., Duquette, D., & Zhou, X. (Forthcoming). The organizational contexts of child representation services in child welfare cases. Family Court Review.
Duquette, D. (Forthcoming). “Children's Justice: How To Improve Legal Representation Of Children In The Child Welfare System.” American Bar Association Publications.
Future publications related to this research will be posted here.