B-14 - Practical Use of the ABA Safety Guide in Dependency Proceedings (Part I of II)   Intermediate

  Legal   Child Abuse (Physical/Sexual)

The ABA Safety Guide for Judges and Attorneys in Dependency Cases provides a concise and practical structure into which facts related to child safety, parental capacities, and reasonable efforts can be applied. Using the Guide promotes a focus on safety from the beginning of a dependency case, through case planning and disposition, and on to reunification and other permanency decisions. A continuous focus on safety requires an understanding of the difference between safety planning (when can children return to their home) and case planning (when case the court and department end their oversight); and draws attention to conditions of return that are clear and understood. Based on concepts similar to the safety framework adopted by Children’s Administration, the Safety Guide should help litigants and the bench provide and analyze information in a clear and consistent manner, making the court process more understandable and predictable for families.

Learning Objectives:
1. Safety decision framework: Threats, vulnerabilities, protective factors.
2. Gathering information to make safety decisions.
3. Articulating of conditions of return.
4. Using an assessment of parental protective capacity to build case plans
5. Safety Planning vs. Case Planning
6. Using safety and case plans, and conditions of return, to make placement and permanency decisions.