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Policy Paper

What We Owe Young Adults Involved with Child Welfare: A Youth Thrive Policy Agenda

January 2022

We owe young people who age out of care the structure and supports that they need to thrive. To fulfill this obligation and to remove barriers to thriving, we need new investments to support these young people. This policy agenda highlights key opportunities to advance the health and well-being of young people who are involved with child welfare systems.

(8 pp)


Willis & Friends: Transforming Health Systems to Ensure Maternal Well-Being

December 2021

The 7th edition of Willis and Friends live series will provide an enlightening conversation with three national policy leaders about the unprecedented opportunities to advance early relational health as a result of the enactment of the American Rescue Plan Act and the proposed Build Back Better Act.


A Social Ecological Model of Racism & Anti-Racism

December 2021

This handout frames racism and anti-racism within a social ecological model in order to promote an understanding of the multifaceted, overlapping, and interactive factors that contribute to and maintain racial inequities, as well as strategies that can be employed across multiple levels in order to eliminate racism, address its multiple impacts, and achieve a more just society.

(2 pp)


Latino Grandfamilies: Helping Children Thrive Through Connection to Family and Cultural Identity

November 2021

Our partner Generations United created a new toolkit that is designed to give resources and tips to child welfare agencies, other government agencies, and nonprofit organizations, to better serve all Latino grandfamilies regardless of child welfare involvement.


Willis & Friends—Partnering with Families is Key for Advancing Early Relational Health

In the sixth conversation of this series, David Willis, MD, welcomes three national innovators and thought leaders who have partnered with CSSP to develop meaningful approaches for advancing early relational health promotion, measurement, and partnerships with families.


Kevin S., et al. v. Blalock and Scrase, Co-Neutrals’ Baseline and 2020 Annual Report (November 15, 2021)

November 2021

This report provides a current summary of efforts made by New Mexico’s Children, Youth, and Families Department (CYFD) and Human Services Department (HSD) as they work to fulfill the commitments outlined in the Kevin S., et al. v. Blalock and Scrase Final Settlement Agreement.

(120 pp)


Our Identities, Ourselves: Anti-Racist Guidelines for Collecting Data on Race & Ethnicity

October 2021

In this webinar, learn best practices and tools for centering equity and constituent voice in data collection, analysis, reporting, and use. Topics explored included: the best ways to capture race and ethnicity within data systems; how frontline workers can better ask nonjudgmental questions about young people and families’ identities throughout the life of a case; how system leaders can ensure that data collected is used to advance equity.

Digital Resource

Youth Thrive Blueprint: Coaching Tool

October 2021

The Youth Thrive Coaching Tool is one of many resources for implementing the Youth Thrive Initiative developed by the Center for the Study of Social Policy. The purpose of this Coaching Tool is to give supervisors key questions, guidance, and ideas about how to help workers assess and support Protective and Promotive Factors with youth.

Click here.


Michelle H., et al. v. McMaster Progress Report (October 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021)

October 2021

This is the ninth report on the progress of the South Carolina Department of Social Services in meeting the requirements of the Final Settlement Agreement.

(162 pp)


Willis & Friends—Vital Signs of Early Relational Health: Autonomic Emotion

September 2021

In the fourth conversation of this series, participants discussed the recently discovered autonomic emotional connection. The connection is an observable state of co-regulation between loved ones when their stress physiology in the body and brain are mutually calmed by the sight, sound, smell, touch, and even taste of one another.