Posts tagged ‘reasonable efforts’

September 9, 2014

New Groundbreaking Book for Juvenile and Family Court Judges

Reasonable Efforts: A Judicial Perspective (2014, hardcover, 461 pages)book cover
by Judge Leonard Edwards, publication made possible by the generous support of the Casey Family Programs and Philanthropic Ventures Foundation.

From the Foreword by the Hon. Michael Nash, Presiding Judge of the Los Angeles Juvenile Court:

“… Two goals of this book are to encourage judges and attorneys to be more assertive in their oversight of social service agencies and to examine the ‘reasonable efforts’ issue earlier in the case. …

“As juvenile court judges, we must find that reasonable efforts have been made to prevent the removal of children from their families, that reasonable efforts have been made to give families a meaningful opportunity to reunify after the children have been removed, and that reasonable efforts have been made to secure permanency for children. These findings must be made within the context of every case, taking into consideration the individual strengths and needs of every family and its members. The issues are varied and often complex. …

“For decades, Judge Edwards has been the conscience and the voice for juvenile court judges nationwide. He has helped define and shape our role more than any other juvenile court judge ever. Once again he has raised his voice to emphasize the importance of this part of our role in more depth than has ever been done before. State by state Judge Edwards reviews the statutory scheme on reasonable efforts, the existing case law on the subject and offers commentary from judges and other child welfare system stakeholders. …”

Contents include:

  1. Legislative History
  2. Federal Law and Child Welfare
  3. What is the Definition of Reasonable Efforts
  4. Aggravated Circumstances: When are Reasonable Efforts Unnecessary?
  5. The Indian Child Welfare Act and Active Efforts
  6. State Responses to the Reasonable Efforts Issue
  7. Recurring Factual Situations in the Trial Courts
  8. Challenges to Effective Use of the Reasonable Efforts Findings—Attorneys Representing Parents and Children
  9. Challenges to Effective Use of the Reasonable Efforts Findings—Judges
  10. Recommended Judicial Strategies
  11. Conclusion

Appendices—State-by-state analysis of statutes, case law, and commentary, forms, documents, benchcards, and more
Bibliograph

For eBook version, download:
.mobi file—can be opened in Kindle, including Kindle reader for PC. .epub file—can be opened in various eBook readers, including iBooks on iPad, and Adobe Digital Editions reader for PC. .pdf file—can be opened in Adobe Acrobat Reader and similar readers.

Juvenile and family court judges and attorneys may request a hardcopy of the book by writing to:

The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges
Attention: Cheryl Davidek
P.O. Box 8970
Reno, NV 89507

There is no charge for the book, but there will be a small charge for shipping and handling.

July 16, 2012

Video Presentation: Reasonable Efforts And Court Improvement

Organizations Focusing on Child Welfare: This video is taken from a presentation by Judge Edwards in Washington. It describes the different governmental and private efforts to improve outcomes for foster youth.

Model Courts: This video taken from a presentation by Judge Edwards describes the Model Court project of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges.

Reasonable Efforts:  This video taken from a presentation by Judge Edwards explains the reasonable efforts provision of federal law, how it should be implemented and how critical it is for oversight of social services actions in child welfare proceedings.

Building a Better Court and Judicial Leadership:  This video taken from a presentation by Judge Edwards explains the importance of consistent judicial leadership in order to improve juvenile court operations.  Judicial rotation is identified as a structural problem that prevents some courts from making significant improvements.

Family Drug Treatment Court Discussion:  This video clip also taken from a presentation by Judge Edwards includes questions from the audience about Family Drug Treatment Courts and how they operate.

Group Decision Making:  This video clip discusses group decision making models and how families can and should be included in addressing child welfare issues.  The article entitled “The Transition to Group Decision Making in Child Protection Cases: Obtaining Better Results for Children and Families,” is a useful companion piece to this video.

Best Practices in Juvenile Dependency Court: This video identifies a number of best practices that have proven effective in juvenile dependency courts across the country.