The purpose of this study was to conduct an analysis of the Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) of 1997. ASFA's goal was to decrease the number of children in foster care and the long lengths of stay children were spending in foster care by promoting permanency via adoption for those children who are unable to reunify with their parents. A modified version ofDavid Gil's model and methodology for social policy analysis was utilized to analyze this legislation.
The results of this study revealed that while the number of adoptions increased following the enactment of ASF A, the number of children waiting to be adopted also increased. On average, children who have been legally freed for adoption spend 23.6 months in foster care, waiting to be adopted. ASF A has failed to take into account the underlying issues that many families face, such as mental health, substance abuse, and poverty issues, and their impact on the parents' ability to reunify with their children within the set time frames. Intended and unintended consequences, as well as, implications for social work policy and practice are discussed.
|Commitee:||Brocato, Jo, Wilson, Steve|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 52/01M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
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