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Economics

What Happens to Children When Their Families Fail?

Clara Fried ('12); Mentor: Eleanor Brown

Abstract:  Because of abuse, neglect, or the death of a parent, there are currently over 400,000 children in the United States foster care system. Children are placed in the care of the state when their families fail them, but research suggests that the state might be failing them too. Adults who spent part of their youth in the foster care system report lower earnings, higher crime rates, higher teen pregnancy rates, and greater chances of homelessness than the general population. For this project, I examined the existent child welfare research and data in order to better understand the areas where further research is needed. I found significant work on economic incentives in foster parenting and child welfare privatization. However, more research needs to be done to fully understand the benefits of various institutional forms in the child welfare system.
Funding Provided by: Paul K. Richter and Evalyn E. Cook Richter Memorial Fund  

Research at Pomona