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May 2019Vol. 20, No. 4New Podcast Shares Tips on Child-Centered Legal Representation to Reduce Time in Foster Care

A children's legal advocacy group, True North Advocates, launched a new podcast that seeks to change child welfare representation through child-centered and permanency-focused advocacy.

The group comprises four attorneys committed to reducing the amount of time children and youth spend in foster care. Its approach is based on three overarching principles:

  • Children's attorneys should assume the lead role in child welfare cases to shape case timing and outcomes (rather than react to someone else's lead).
  • The focus should be on moving children and youth from state custody to family permanency.
  • Adherence to permanency time frames should be considered a basic legal right of children.

The Children's Law Podcast was designed to share practical solutions for achieving expedited permanency for children. The podcast currently consists of seven segments:  

  • An introduction that underscores the belief that children's lawyers have the power to change the child welfare system
  • An outline of the five foundational practice points every children's lawyer should follow
  • A discussion of the impacts of separating children and youth from their parents
  • A look at new funding opportunities under title IV-E
  • Five common mistakes that children's attorneys make and how to avoid them
  • Tips for understanding what constitutes a family and how to help children and youth find connection with a forever family
  • How to manage time constraints in child welfare cases

The Children's Law Podcast is available at