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Policy Paper

Supporting the First 1,000 Days of A Child’s Life: An Anti-Racist Blueprint for Early Childhood Well-Being and Child Welfare Prevention

February 2021

To support the health and well-being of children and families of color, we must implement comprehensive strategies that address systemic and institutional racism. This report offers a blueprint for creating equity-centered, anti-racist policies that support the health and well-being of children and families of color.

Watch a webinar on the Blueprint here.

(31 pp)

Policy Paper

A Critical Resource at Risk: Supporting Kinship Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond

May 2020

As the current pandemic upends daily lives, among the families suffering the most are kinship caregivers. This brief explores kinship care and how this critical resource is at risk now and in the future.

(10 pp)

Policy Paper

COVID-19: Our Response Must Protect the Health and Well-Being of All Children, Youth, and Families

March 2020

As the United States responds to the public health emergency and the looming economic crisis stemming from COVID-19, there has not been enough attention to the needs of children, youth, and families who are likely to suffer most during this crisis.

Read a statement from CSSP President Judith Meltzer on COVID-19.


Policy Paper

What do “Work Requirements” Actually Require? A look at programs that meet families’ basic needs in Montgomery County, Maryland

June 2019

This brief explores work we have done to understand work requirements in Montgomery County, MD. Our goal is to learn what was required of families to apply for, and receive, TANF and SNAP. 

Download the supporting infographic. 

(8 pp)

Policy Paper

Integrating DULCE into a State Child Welfare Prevention Continuum

May 2019

The Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA) marks a substantial movement toward child welfare reform by bringing child welfare financing into alignment with what research tells us is best for children and families—keeping children in their homes whenever safe and possible. This brief provides an overview of key opportunities for DULCE to better support families as a part of a state’s prevention continuum.

(2 pp)

Policy Paper

Seizing the Opportunity: 10 Ways to Advance Equity Through FFPSA

December 2018

This brief outlines 10 opportunities for states to leverage FFPSA to both advance equity and promote better outcomes for children and families. While this list is not exhaustive and there are many other strategies for advancing equity, the 10 opportunities below represent concrete strategies states can pursue to achieve an equitable child welfare system.

(2 pp)


Moving to High Quality Child Care for All: Addressing Inequities through CCDBG State Plans

October 2018

As States begin implementing their required CCDBG triennial plans for 2019-2021, Child Care Administrators and other State policy leaders should use this opportunity to improve the quality of, and expand access to, child care for low-income families of color.

Policy Paper

Family First Prevention Services Act: Pregnant & Parenting Youth FAQs

October 2018

The Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA) was signed into law on February 9, 2018. The FAQs in this brief provide responses to the most commonly asked questions related to this population.


Opportunities to Strengthen Developmental Screening for Children Involved in Child Welfare Systems

April 2018

The recommendations in this brief highlight strategies for improving the delivery of developmental screening and early intervention for children who become known to state and local child welfare systems.

(13 pp)


Advancing Equity-Driven Family Engagement for Systems Change in Early Childhood


This brief explores how early childhood leaders can advance efforts to engage families along a continuum—from first teacher to policy advocate for systems change in early childhood.
(4 pp)