History of Minority Populations in the Child Welfare System Essay

502 WordsJul 23, 20123 Pages
History of Minority Populations in the Child Welfare System Alejandra Rosas BSHS 301 Introduction to Human Services May 7, 2012 History of Minority Populations in the Child Welfare System The treatment of minority children in the U.S. child welfare system has been marked by racism manifested in inequitable policies and in insufficient and inadequate services (Turner, 1988). African American children are overrepresented in the foster care system, comprising nearly 60 % of all placements in the year 2003 (Martin, 2007). Overrepresentation is driven by other long standing factors such as social oppression, negative social conditions, racial discrimination, and economic injustice (Martin, 2007). In the 1700s, orphaned or homeless children were placed in almshouses or “apprenticeships.” Attitudes toward orphaned or homeless children were harsh but even more so toward black children. Although developing orphanages were establishing, Black children were excluded from the services. Instead, separate services were established for Black children, Association for the Care of Colored Children established by the Society of Friends in 1822 (Turner, 1988). Although the welfare system evolved as years progressed, Black children were still excluded from the developing foster care system in the last of the 1800s. Not only are black children overrepresented in the child welfare system, so were Native Americans. Native American children were removed from their homes on reservations for alleged maltreatment and thus placing them in adoptive Caucasian homes (Martin, 2007). Although many of them were truly removed for maltreatment, 99% of the children were removed because social workers believed that the children were victims of social deprivation do to the extreme poverty common on most Indian reservations (Martin, 2007). These acts on behalf of the child

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