America’s Youngest Outcasts 2010

12/2011

America’s Youngest Outcasts 2010 updates a previous report created by The National Center on Family Homelessness titled America’s Youngest Outcasts: State Report Card on Child Homelessness. Our earlier report, based on 2006 data about the extent of the problem, was itself an update of a landmark study we issued in 1999 that provided the first comprehensive profile of America’s homeless children and families.

America’s Youngest Outcasts 2010 documents the numbers of homeless children in every state, their well-being, the risk for child homelessness, and state level planning and policy activities. Using findings from numerous sources that include well-established national data sets as well as our own research, we rank the states in each of four domains and then develop a composite of these domains to rank the states from 1 (best) to 50 (worst).
America’s Youngest Outcasts 2010 reports the following:

  • 1.6 million American children, or one in 45 children, are homeless in a year.1
  • This equates to more than 30,000 children each week, and more than 4,400 each day.
  • Children experiencing homelessness suffer from hunger, poor physical and emotional health, and missed educational opportunities.
  • A majority of these children have limited educational proficiency in math and reading.
  • Not surprisingly, the risks for child homelessness—such as extreme poverty and worst case housing needs—have worsened with the economic recession, even though the total housing capacity for families increased by more than 15,000 units in the past four years, primarily due to the federal Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program (HPRP).
  • Despite this bleak picture, planning and policy activities to support the growth and development of these vulnerable children remain limited. Sixteen states have done no planning related to child homelessness, and only seven states have extensive plans.

Although the majority of homeless children reside in a few states (50% reside in six states; 75% reside in 18 states), thousands and tens of thousands of children in every state go to sleep each night without a home to call their own. The numbers of homeless children in 2010 are likely undercounted since data collection procedures changed in California, reducing California’s reported total by 162,822 children in a single year, from 2009 to 2010. In the three previous data years (2007, 2008, 2009), California accounted for more than 25% of the nation’s homeless children.

Source: National Center on Family Homelessness

Available at: http://www.homelesschildrenamerica.org/media/NCFH_AmericaOutcast2010_web.pdf

Statement from Secretary Sebelius on becoming the new Chair of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness

12/14/11

Yesterday, I was pleased to take on the role of Chair of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. I look forward to building on the hard work of this year’s Chair, Secretary Solis, whose accomplishments include: developing a plan to increase access to mainstream benefits and increasing engagement with governors and mayors to align local plans to Opening Doors Across America-the nation’s first-ever comprehensive strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness.

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Available at: http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2011pres/12/20111214a.html

Early Childhood State Policy Profiles

NCCP’s Early Childhood Profiles were produced as part of the Improving the Odds for Young Children project. These profiles highlight states’ policy choices that promote health, education, and strong families alongside other contextual data related to the well-being of young children.

Source: National Center on Child Poverty

Available at: http://nccp.org/profiles/early_childhood.html

 

More Transparency Required for D.C. Child Welfare

9/19/11

Just a few weeks ago, the D.C. Court of Appeals revealed that D.C.’s Child and Family Services Agency (CFSA) housed one of its charges in a homeless shelter. When the youth turned 21, CFSA sent him into the world without a place to live or any means of affording one.

Source: Huffington Post

Available at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/matthew-fraidin/dc-child-welfare-transparency-needed_b_970322.html

Residents, agencies attack minority child-welfare problem

8/31/11

On Aug. 12, 224 Linn County children and youth were in foster homes after being removed from their own parents’ custody. Of that number, 79 – more than 35 percent – were African American, in a county where about 4 percent of the population is African American.

That disparity – on Aug. 12, African American children were four times as likely to be placed in foster homes, and four times as likely to remain there longer than children of other races – is being attacked by the Department of Human Services, agencies that work with DHS, and local African American volunteers.

“What this suggests to us is, we need very seriously to improve,” said Marc Baty, DHS service manager for the 14-county Cedar Rapids area.

Source: Eastern Iowa Government

Available at: http://easterniowagovernment.com/2011/08/31/aafprc-draft/

ZERO TO THREE – 26th National Training Institute

ZERO TO THREE’s National Training Institute (NTI) is the premier conference for professionals dedicated to promoting the health and well-being of infants and toddlers. Don’t miss this comprehensive and multidisciplinary conference that focuses on cutting-edge research, best practices, and policy issues for infants, toddlers, and families. Make plans now to join your colleagues for a truly innovative educational experience that will enhance your professional career.

Source: ZERO TO THREE

Available at: http://www.zttnticonference.org/

Collaboration Offices – Priority Areas

Head Start State Collaboration Directors facilitate collaboration among Head Start agencies and state and local entities as charged by the Office of Head Start in the Regional Office. Find out more about the priority areas.

Source: Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center

Available at: http://eclkc.ohs.acf.hhs.gov/hslc/Head%20Start%20Program/State%20collaboration/HSSCO/hssco-priority-areas.pdf

Child Maltreatment: Strengthening National Data on Child Fatalities Could Aid in Prevention

More children have likely died from maltreatment than are counted in NCANDS, and HHS does not take full advantage of available information on the circumstances surrounding child maltreatment deaths. NCANDS estimated that 1,770 children in the United States died from maltreatment in fiscal year 2009. According to GAO’s survey, nearly half of states included data only from child welfare agencies in reporting child maltreatment fatalities to NCANDS, yet not all children who die from maltreatment have had contact with these agencies, possibly leading to incomplete counts. HHS also collects but does not report some information on the circumstances surrounding child maltreatment fatalities that could be useful for prevention, such as perpetrators’ previous maltreatment of children. The National Center for Child Death Review (NCCDR), a nongovernmental organization funded by HHS, collects more detailed data on circumstances from 39 states, but these data on child maltreatment deaths have not yet been synthesized or published.

Source: U.S. Government Accountability Office

Available at: http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d11599.pdf