Child Welfare Agencies urged to Test Parents for Drugs

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Studies show a majority of kids involved in child welfare services are affected by parents who abuse drugs, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

SAMHSA released a new publication, Substance Abuse Specialists in Child Welfare Agencies and Dependency Courts. It recommends a collaboration between child welfare agencies, drug abuse counselors and parents.

“The purpose of co-locating substance abuse specialists is to ensure that parents are assessed as quickly as possible, to improve parent engagement and retention in treatment, to streamline entry into treatment, and to provide consultation to child welfare and dependency court workers,” the publication explains.

SAMHSA has also released Drug Testing in Child Welfare: Practice and Policy Considerations, which urges child welfare agency policymakers to use drug testing in child welfare practices.

Click on each publication title to download an online copy.

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