An Evaluation of Services in the Bureau of Milwaukee County Child Welfare
This series of reports presents the findings from a three-year evaluation of the child welfare program in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin.
These reports provide results from an evaluation of services in the Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare.
Are Family Needs and Services Aligned? Evaluating the Bureau of Milwaukee Child Welfare summarizes the major findings from the three-year evaluation. As part of this evaluation, surveys were conducted of caseworkers, substitute care providers, and parents and children receiving in-home family preservation services and services for children entering out-of-home care and their families. The evaluation yielded several important findings. First, families served by these programs were found to be of very limited means. This is particularly true for families with children in out-of-home care, of whom four in ten had reported annual incomes of $5,000 or less. Second, the service needs of the families varied widely. Families with children in out-of-home care had a broader array of service needs than those receiving family preservation services, and a greater reported need for concrete services. Third, parents tended to report higher service needs, both for themselves and for their children, than were reported by case managers. Although discrepancies between case manager and parent service recommendations tended to be more pronounced for families with children in care, discrepancies in recommendations for concrete services were evident for both programs. Finally, findings from statistical analyses predicting reinvestigation and family reunification underscore the salience of parental economic deprivation, and add support to the argument that families receiving child welfare services would be well served by close collaboration between child welfare authorities and other social service systems.
An Evaluation of Ongoing Services in Milwaukee County covers the bureau's program that provides case management services to families of children in substitute care.
An Evaluation of Safety Services in Milwaukee County covers the bureau's program that provides in-home supports and risk-prevention services to families who have had substantiated child maltreatment reports.