We can build a society where children and families are strengthened and supported, not surveilled and separated.
We all must move together to end the system of punishment and surveillance that is the family policing system. Until we do so, we must maintain ICWA as a necessary tool to ensure tribal sovereignty is respected.
The child welfare system is not a helping system. The system subjugates, surveils, regulates, and punishes families – families who are disproportionately Black and Indigenous. It acts as a family policing system. The system and its supporters portray family policing as a legitimate, supportive helping system – one that protects the safety and well-being of children through necessary state-sanctioned interventions. But the outcomes for children and families are abysmal. Children have significantly worse outcomes as a result of system involvement. Families do not experience healing and children are not safer. Ultimately, the impact of the system on children, families, and communities underscores the ways in which the system functions to maintain anti-Blackness, White supremacy, racial capitalism, and colonialism. We can collectively do better.
The family policing system’s punitive approach does not – and cannot – ever authentically heal or prevent anything.
November 15, 2022
ICWA protects Indigenous kids by keeping them in the care of extended family or tribes whenever possible.
November 1, 2022
When we call a system that surveils, regulates, punishes, and forcibly separates families a “child welfare system,” we misconstrue that system’s purpose and actions.
April 7, 2022
Communities gathering to abolish the family policing system too are continuing the ongoing struggle against reproductive oppression.
March 3, 2022
How do we collectively and collaboratively create new ways of supporting and caring for families without replicating the coercive structure, surveillance, and separation in other forms?
August 11, 2021
Columbia Journal of Race and Law
Ultimately, the existence of the family policing system means we live in a world where the well-being of Black mothers, Black families, and Black communities is expendable.
February 20, 2021
Journal of Public Child Welfare
The child welfare system disproportionately harms Black children and families through systemic over-surveillance, over-involvement, and the resulting adverse outcomes associated with foster care.
September 6, 2020
The trauma and harm to families and communities caused by intrusive child welfare system interventions is well documented by multiple sources – to the degree that many argue the system can be more accurately viewed as the family policing.
October 24, 2020