Federal and State Policy Tools and Legislation

Developing new policies to support improved practice requires all three systems to work in a collaborative method, which places new responsibilities upon each system’s professionals. In a collaborative setting, judges, attorneys, child welfare professionals, treatment providers and additional stakeholders must move beyond their traditional roles, begin to look at the system as a whole, and focus on the needs of children and families in a holistic way. By rising above daily practice issues and making the best interests of abused and neglected children the primary level of focus, all three partners can plan for effective systemic change. This change can include development of treatment and support service options that best meet the needs of dependent children and their families within their communities.

This policy focus can guide planning for change in court and agency practice which is centered on children and families taking into consideration the importance of a child’s needs, including a child’s sense of time, developmental needs, sense of well-being, and other critical developmental issues. A holistic approach to assessing and revising policy can ensure that appropriate and immediately accessible substance abuse services will be available to parents and those mental health needs of children and parents will be met.


State Policy Tools

Interagency Agreements & Memoranda of Understanding

Shared Principles Statements

Local Site Implementation

Executive Orders

Federal and State Legislation

Professionals who work with families with substance use disorder should develop a good understanding of Federal legislation and the respective State laws that have been implemented to carry out the Federal legislation.

Federal Legislation

State Legislation and Regulation

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