• United Family Advocates in the News

    News and Media

    UFA co-chair Andrew Brown talks in this podcast about the newly-introduced 21st Century Children and Families Act. Andrew explains how our foster care system came to be this way, and breaks down the details of this new pro-family bill.

    By Roxanna Asgarian, Texas Monthly, September 21, 2021

    United Family Advocates' Andrew Brown quoted in this article on how a broad bipartisan coalition came together in Texas to pass revolutionary reforms to the state's child protection laws aimed at keeping families together.

    By Sara Tiano, The Imprint, August 4, 2021

    United Family Advocates' Andrew Brown comments in this article on the need for stronger state law protections to prevent unnecessary family separation by the use of hidden foster care.

    UFA co-chair Andrew Brown talks in this podcast about the CAPTA reforms he’s championing and discusses those recent victories in his home state of Texas.

    By Sylvia Harvey, The Imprint, May 2, 2021

    This article describes a wave of terminations of parental rights during COVID, which has proceeded despite the barriers that families have faced in accessing services and time with their families. It details how the Suspend the Timeline Not Parental Rights During a Public Health Crisis Act, an act sponsored by Rep. Gwen Moore and proposed by United Family Advocates, would spare children and parents the trauma of unnecessary termination of parental rights during the global pandemic. Kathleen Creamer of UFA notes that “COVID guidance failed to halt the push for quick terminations in child welfare courtrooms...The plea contained in the [federal guidance] was unenforceable, and indeed undermined by statutory language and daily practice in family courts.”

    By Chris Gottlieb, Time Magazine, March 17, 2021

    "Today, more than 200,000 children of color are in government custody in our foster system, and the current protesters are largely low-income Black and brown parents who explain that fearmongering about child abuse has empowered child protective authorities to unfairly target their communities and invade their homes with virtual impunity. A shocking 53% of Black children’s homes are investigated by child welfare officials. That knock at the door is not benign social work. Caseworkers routinely demand entry into homes in the middle of the night without warrants. The interrogations are frightening; the strip searches degrading. Far too often, they end with the trauma of children pulled from their parents’ arms"

    By Kathleen Creamer and Chris Gottlieb, The Imprint, Feb 9, 2021

    Kathleen Creamer and Chris Gottlieb of United Family Advocates discuss why families are harmed by the Adoption and Safe Families Act and offer concrete suggestions to reorient federal law to support lifelong family connections for children and parents.

    By Diane Redleaf, The Imprint, December 21, 2020

    Diane Redleaf of United Family Advocates argues that the incoming Biden administration should focus on child welfare's "pathological need to pathologize families, instead of helping them with their obvious needs," and calls for "a system built around an infusion of flexible dollars to be used for families' concrete needs."

    By Diane Redleaf and Lenore Seknazy, New York Daily News July 6, 2020

    "The mind-bogglingly vast majority of calls turn out not to be cases of abuse or neglect at all. That’s great news, of course — unless a call allowed some official to enter your home, open your cabinets, and strip-search your kids, looking for evidence of starvation, drugs or abuse...But urging everyone to “See something, say something” — without much guidance narrowing what “something” is — means that people call to report things like, “I saw some kids playing outside alone.” Most troubling of all, many people call because they mistake poverty for neglect."

       

    By Diane Redleaf, The Atlantic, January 27, 2019

    "The CPS system needs some sensible checks to protect the innocent. “When in doubt, call the hotline” inevitably leads to unnecessary stress for wrongly accused families. Unless there’s reason to fear imminent harm to a child, a medical review for “reasonable suspicion” should precede rather than follow the decision to place a call. States need to use neutral decision makers. Relatedly, doctors who work directly with the state need to disclose their roles so that parents have a genuine and fair choice about how to respond to allegations against them; parents shouldn’t mistake physicians tasked with evaluating the merits of a hotline call for members of their child’s medical-care team. Finally, long delays in concluding investigations, especially where evidence of wrongdoing by parents has not been uncovered, should no longer be tolerated."