“Much research has been conducted on the disproportionality of children of color in child welfare. Racial Disproportionality refers to the overrepresentation of children of color in child and family serving systems, and can be attributed to multiple factors including racism, poverty, less than responsive organizational culture and service strategies, and inadequate resources. ACS, like other child and family serving systems across the country, has undertaken an effort to address the systemic issues that contribute to disproportionality.”
- Task Force on Racial Equity and Cultural Competence, August 2011, New York City
The Administration for Children’s Services Taskforce on Racial Equity and Cultural Competency was established in 2006 to support the development of a system of directly provided and contracted services that responds respectfully and effectively to people of all racial and cultural backgrounds. In 2011, the Task Force was renamed the Racial Equity and Cultural Competence Committee, and includes a diverse representation of Children’s Services staff and external stakeholders and professionals committed to addressing and resolving the disparate treatment of people of color in the child welfare, juvenile justice, early care and education, and other systems. This critical work is embedded in the Administration for Children’s Services Strategic Plan, designed to achieve excellence in child welfare, juvenile justice, and early care and education.
The mission of the Racial Equity and Cultural Competence Committee is to promote racial equity throughout child welfare, juvenile justice, and early care, and education systems. We do so by:
- Developing and implementing specific actions that promote equitable outcomes for children and families of color;
- Building the capacity of Children’s Services’ staff at all levels to respond effectively to structural racism and individual bias and promote culturally competent policy and practice;
- Partnering with community and other systems that play a key role in the achievement of positive service outcomes to promote racial equity and cultural competence, and;
- Informing policies, training, hiring practices, and program practice guidelines where needed to ensure continuity and sustainability in promoting equitable outcomes for children, families, and staff.