Research shows that kinship foster care is more stable than non-kin care and can help prevent disruptions that are harmful to a child’s well being. Kin first agencies invest necessary resources and align their policies, practices and staff to make the child’s first placement with kin whenever possible.
- Create a firewall that requires approval by a supervisor, program manager or director for all non-kin placements.
- Provide staff with tools they need to place with kin immediately including:
- Well articulated roles and responsibilities across units for the tasks associated with making an initial kin placement
- A well established process of teamwork within and across units to do everything it takes to make the initial placement a kin placement
- Streamlined processes for conducting background checks and fingerprinting
- Clear procedures for conducting initial home checks
- Training on the requirements of the Indian Child Welfare Act and how to work effectively with tribal governments and their child welfare agencies
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