Why Abolition

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Calls to abolish the child welfare system have provoked questions about the feasibility of dismantling the current system and worries that abolition will put vulnerable children at greater risk of maltreatment. Despite the clear evidence of harm inflicted by the family policing system, some child welfare experts argue that abandoning the system is dangerous because it is needed to protect children from harm. This essay makes a concise case for abolition of family policing and contests the claims made against it. It explains not only how the family policing system harms children, but also why abolishing it is essential to keep children safe.


abolition, family policing, family separation, foster care, mandated reporting, racism

Publication Title

Family Court Review