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Building Solutions in Child Protective Services (Norton Professional Books)by Insoo Kim Berg
Synopses & Reviews
How does one change the attitudes and practices of child protective services (CPS)--a statewide bureaucracy often overwhelmed and understaffed? First, take an outsider to the system, Insoo Kim Berg, who has a vision and a solution-focused model. Add an insider, Susan Kelly, who understands the system. Spend many hours with CPS workers in the field, learning from them and helping them make the shift from a deficit perspective to a collaborative model that emphasizes strengths and solutions. Envision and implement change throughout the system. Celebrate small successes on the way to building family self-sufficiency and integrity. This recipe for reforming child protective services is being followed in many public child welfare agencies, with growing success. In the authors explain how to conceptualize, implement, and sustain this hopeful and positive frame in a daily practice for dedicated frontline workers as well as for those in supervision, management, and administration. The book has two parts. In the first, the authors put child protective services in context, introducing the system and their new approach, giving a brief history of child protection in the United States, and setting the stage for change. In the second part, the authors walk readers through the nuts and bolts of implementation, from the first phone call to case closure--including discussions about placing a child out of the home. Berg and Kelly also discuss supervision, consultation, and ongoing training, as well as their vision of the future of CPS. This book is not a manual; it is a challenge to step out of the traditional CPS "box" and think differently--to create client-driven services that make sense. The authors challenge CPS administrators, supervisors, and workers to begin conversations about how the system can be more helpful and respectful to the families so that the parents can get what they need to care for their children. Building Solutions should have a place on the desk of everyone involved in child protective services.
Book News Annotation:
Berg, a child protective service outsider (Brief Family Therapy Center, Milwaukee), pairs with system insider Kelly (Michigan State Family Independence Agency) to offer a solution- rather than deficit-focused paradigm for changing the attitudes and practices of stressed state CPS agencies based on client empowerment-oriented mental health practice instead of the expert-driven medical model. Appends handouts for duplication, details of the visioning and focus group processes for local communities, a worker/supervisor survey, and a summary of US child protection legislation.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
"[O]ffers creative ways to build alliances with families...using language and motivational interviewing to help parents focus on problem-solving....a valuable resource." --
How does one change the attitudes and practices of a statewide bureaucracy notorious for inefficiency, staff turnover, and a culture of despair? First, take an outsider to the system, Insoo Berg. with a vision and a solution-focused model. Add an insider. Susan Kelly, who understands the system. Spend many hours with CPS workers in the field, helping them make the shift to a partnership model that emphasizes strengths and solutions. Envision systemwide change. Celebrate small successes on the way to building family self-sufficiency and integrity. This recipe, described here in detail, can be replicated wholly or partially by any CPS agency.
Includes bibliographical references (p. -267) and index.
About the Author
Insoo Kim Berg, MSW, codeveloped Solution-Focused Brief Therapy and is Director of the Brief Family Therapy Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her most recent books are Children's Solution Work (with Therese Steiner) and Interviewing for Solutions (with Peter de Jonge).Susan Kelly, M.S.W., works for the State of Michigan Family Independence Agency and manages the Division of Community Supportive Services.
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