Child Trends Introduces New Tool in Comparable Child Welfare Data

Child Trends has released a new tool that offers browsers a robust collection of data around child maltreatment, foster care, kinship caregivers and adoption for all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C.

The figures are drawn from the most recent Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) report, the U.S. Census Bureau and other sources. All the information is pegged to national trendlines for comparison purposes.

The Child Trends resource breaks out AFCARS data for foster youth, such as statewide reasons for entries into foster care. It also provides detailed demographic information for children in care as well as case plan information and outcomes for children exiting the system, such as reunification, emancipation, living with relative or guardian, or being adopted.

The Child Trends tool allows state comparable data in four areas: child maltreatment, foster care, adoption and kinship. Image courtesy of Child Trends

For the adoption domain, there are data points covering the race and ethnicity of children who have been adopted or are waiting to be adopted from foster care, as well as numbers on transracial adoptions.

The tool also includes an array of data on kinship caregivers across the country, including the race and age of children placed with relatives, the percentage of households with a grandparent living with a grandchild, how many children have been adopted out of foster care by relatives, and funding available for subsidized guardianship, among others.

The child maltreatment section holds several interesting areas of note. Information includes the numbers of referrals, investigations and substantiations for child abuse and neglect. Also included: child maltreatment broken down by type, number of child fatalities as a result of maltreatment, ages of child maltreatment victims and types of post-response services utilized by children in foster care.

Click here to check out the data tool.

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Jeremy Loudenback, Senior Editor, The Chronicle of Social Change
About Jeremy Loudenback, Senior Editor, The Chronicle of Social Change 343 Articles
Jeremy is a West Coast-based senior editor for The Chronicle of Social Change. Reach him at