Key Takeaway

This P4C brief provides an introductory history of foster care and relevant historical context, critical to understanding how the current system reflects and upholds systemic racism in its policy and practice. Since its establishment in the late 19th century, the foster care system has been a microcosm of broader systemic violence against communities of color. The foster care system was originally predicated on the well-being of white children and families, and many of its present day policies continue to reflect a myopic understanding of child welfare. Harmful effects of the foster care system must be fully understood to envision, create, and enact a future that protects and ensures safety for all children.