Public Policy Forums: Children and Families

Combating youth violence: concrete solutions for new york city

Combating Youth Violence: Concrete Solutions for New York City

3/21/12 - Leaders in other cities have shown that youth, communities, and law enforcement can work together for successful solutions. Can we follow that path in New York? A discussion with David Kennedy, Melissa Mark Viverito, Errol Louis and others. Read More » VIEW VIDEO »

Ties That Bind: Reimagining juvenile justice and child welfare for teens, families and communities

Ties That Bind: Reimagining juvenile justice and child welfare for teens, families and communities

2/2/12 - The Bloomberg administration is seeking major changes in how the city works with teens in juvenile justice, child protection and foster care. Can the city steer more young people away from both foster care and juvenile justice - and work with more parents and teens to help them stay together? Read More » view video »

youth in Harm's Way: Marijuana, Law Enforcement and Young New Yorkers

Youth in Harms Way

3/24/11- Seventy percent of arrests for possession of marijuana in NYC in 2010 were of young people under 30, and 86 percent of those arrested were black and Latino. Is NYC's drug enforcement policy worth the social costs? We hosted a panel discussion on the topic with Staten Island DA Dan Donovan, DPA's NY Director gabriel sayegh and others. read more »
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parent advocates in the child welfare system

Parent Advocates in the Child Welfare System

3/16/11 - Parent advocates are trained to support birth parents as they navigate the city's complicated child welfare system and research suggests they can help parents move their child welfare cases forward. How much value do parent advocates add to child welfare practice? What challenges do parent advocates face within NYC's child welfare system? Read More »
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Foster Teens in Transition: Are they better off today?

Foster Teens in Transition

2/24/11 -For years, rates of homelessness among the city's former foster youth have remained stubbornly high. The Center released a Child Welfare Watch report investigating young adults search for stability after leaving foster care and hosted a discussion about how NYC can meet the needs of teens still in care, and those who have recently left. read more » view video »

the 'Just' City: Equality, Social Justice and The Growing City

The Just City

2/08/11 - Mayors and city governments want to promote economic growth to fill the coffers, pay for services and raise incomes. But what about the injustices of persistent inequality, racial and ethnic segregation and beyond? The forum featured a presentation from Susan Fainstein followed by a discussion with Brad Lander, Ken Knuckles and Chung-Wha Hong. Read More » view video »

Marching In Place: The Great Recession, Low-Income Working Women and Economic Inequality

Marching in Place

5/27/10 - For the first time in history, women account for half of the U.S. workforce. But is this progress? Women still earn less than men and many working women are struggling with poverty. Former U.S. Rep. Sue Kelly and others discussed the effect the recession has had on women's equality in the workplace.
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Work Life, Home Life: should government require paid leave?

work life home life

5/12/10 - About 1.3 million working people in New York City have no paid sick leave, and pressure is mounting on employers to provide it. Are there plausible ways to improve family policies in the workplace? Or is it too much for business — and the economy — to bear? Read More »
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school food matters: hunger, obesity and the reauthorization of the child nutrition act

School Food Matters

3/3/10 - According to advocates, families of at least 1 in 5 New York City children still rely on soup kitchens and food pantries, despite free school breakfast and subsidized school lunches. What would it take to ensure that more children receive free — and higher quality — school food? read more » view video »

a transformative moment? New York's New vision for Juvenile Justice

New York's New Vision for Juvenile Justice

2/12/10 - Major changes are afoot in juvenile justice. What are the emerging visions? How might city, state and nonprofit agencies work together to support effective reform for children and families? A conversation with three NY commissioners about working toward meaningful change. Read More »
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a need for correction: reforming new york's juvenile justice system

A Need for Correction

10/20/09 -The federal Department of Justice has threatened to take over the state's juvenile justice system because of incidents of staff violence and inadequate care for children in custody. Will the state and city impove services and conditions of confinement for juvenile delinquents? read more » view video »


4/30/09 - The federal stimulus and the Obama administration's 2010 budget plan include many measures for poverty reduction. Can the nation develop a new framework for reducing poverty? Or are these old programs in new packages, with more dollars attached? Read More »

Regional Solutions to Segregation and Racial Inequity: Can Metro Areas Overcome Inequality?

3/11/09 - Suburban growth and development have increased segregation and racial inequalities and by using the Twin Cities region as a lens, Myron Orfield demonstrates the need for regional solutions that promote equity and integration for housing, jobs, and schools. read more »

Class struggles: strengthening schools by strengthening families

10/21/08 - NYC public schools are responsible for their students' educational progress, but what happens when problems at home prevent kids from attending school? Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott and author Richard Rothstein discuss solutions to high rates of chronic absenteeism in NYC public schools. Read More »

Homes Away From Home: The Changing Face of Foster Care

9/16/08 - New York City's foster care system has made headway in finding family homes for teens previously relegated to group homes and residential treatment centers. But city officials and nonprofit leaders face huge challenges in creating effective programs to help foster parents. read more »

Home Is Where I Belong: Juvenile Justice Shifts Back to the Community

4/17/08 - The State may close near-empty juvenile facilities, while New York City is deploying family supports and services designed to keep more young people from being locked up. Could New York depend more on communities and families to less juvenile detention and incarceration? Read More »

Pressures and Possibilities: Family Support, Foster Care, and the Future of a Billion-Dollar System A Child Welfare Watch Forum

12/3/07 - The Bloomberg administration is mounting an all-out campaign to reduce the length of time children spend in foster care and to make preventive and post-reunification supports for families more effective. What is the best way to bring about reform?

From The Margins To The Mainstream: Responding to Rising Rates of Autism

11/28/07 - A fast-growing number of people receiving government-funded developmental disabilities services in New York are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). How are government, service providers, schools and parents responding?

Opening The Schoolyard Gates: Reclaiming Urban Community Space

9/27/07 - As part of PlaNYC 2030, Mayor Bloomberg has proposed opening schoolyards to the public during non-school hours. What should the city do to ensure that reclaimed urban community space strengthen families and neighborhoods?

Learn English...If You Can: The Shortage of English Classes for NYC's Immigrants

10/26/06 - New Yorkers' demand for low-cost English classes vastly outstrips supply. What are the cultural and economic implications? Can New York build a better, more accessible language education system for adults?

Double Duty: Solutions to the Work/Family Dilemma

10/11/06 - Parents who combine the uncompensated work of childcare with paid employment have two jobs, yet workplaces and government have done little to accommodate their dual roles. How are women affected and how can it be changed?

Is There Order in Family Court? A Child Welfare Watch Forum

3/16/06 - New York's Family Court ensures neither fair representation nor timely decisions. New state legislative mandates, the impact of the Nixzmary Brown case and new initiatives at the city's Administration for Children's Services have converged upon this overstressed institution. What will it take to finally fix Family Court? Read More »

Working Toward a Common Goal: Safe, Supportive Schools for Every New York Teen

3/2/06 - Students with too few credits, who have discipline problems or who lose interest in school often drop out or are placed in alternative programs. Young people of color are disproportionately affected. How can New York help all students reach their potential?

Young Women of Color and HIV/AIDS: Where Did We Go Wrong?

2/16/06 - HIV infection rates have declined in other high-risk populations, yet new HIV and AIDS cases among black women and Latinas in New York State have more than tripled in the last 15 years. What can be done to reverse the trend?

Promises I Can Keep: Poor Women, Motherhood and Marriage

1/26/06 - Kathryn Edin, co-author of Promises I Can Keep: Why Poor Women Put Motherhood Before Marriage, discusses her book, which is based on a five-year study of single mothers in eight of the Philadelphia area's poorest neighborhoods.

TAKING CARE OF NEW YORK'S CHILDREN (II): The Future of Out of School Time

12/6/05 - The Bloomberg administration has consolidating all out of school time programs under the Department of Youth and Community Development. Can the city save money, expand services and improve access in underserved communities?


10/26/05 - Mayor Bloomberg and the NYC Administration for Children's Services have announced a broad expansion and realignment of child care and early education programs. Is the plan right for the city, and can the administration follow through on its promise? Read More »

Averting Crisis: Community Strategies for Supporting Families and Preventing Homelessness

10/20/05 - The Bloomberg administration has invested new dollars and creativity in preventing family homelessness. The Center for New York City Affairs proposes the city unify its many family support programs to institutionalize a neighborhood-based safety net. Read More »

WITH FEET IN TWO WORLDS: Immigrants In A Global City

5/10/05 - Millions of city residents have their ears and eyes attuned to their home countries, to their families, politics, cultural life and the flow of money across borders. This forum explores transnational life and culture in immigrant New York. read more »


12/14/04 - The number of children in foster care is in steep decline, government is promoting prevention and neighborhood-based strategies are popular. Why are the nonprofit agencies running programs in a jam-and why does the future appear so unforgiving?

KIDS AT RISK: Health of Immigrant Children in NYC

4/28/04 - Children of immigrants are at increased risk for environmentally-related urban illnesses as well as behavioral problems. The city's health and mental health care systems often prove daunting. A look at research and discussion of emerging solutions.

Early Learners: Newcomer Families and Pre-School Education in NYC

3/17/04 - Early education programs have a proven, positive impact on children's learning, yet far fewer children of immigrant parents are enrolled in preschool than those from native-born families. What will it take to make preschool more attractive to newcomer parents?

THE MANY LANGUAGES OF POVERTY: Immigrant Family Services in NYC

1/21/04 - Research shows that New York families with limited English are more likely to be poor and hungry than their peers. How well do current work supports and nonprofit social services serve these families? Will the city's new language access law make a difference?

IN THE WAKE OF NICHOLSON: Child Welfare and Domestic Violence in New York City

10/15/03 - New York's child welfare authorities, prosecutors and Family Courts are transforming the ways in which they work with survivors of domestic violence, their children and their batterers. How has policy, practice and enforcement changed?

REFORMING SPECIAL EDUCATION...AGAIN: How Can We Best Serve the City's Neediest Students?

10/9/03 - After years of stormy debate about the problems of special ed, there's little agreement on solutions. Can Chancellor Klein's vision address the real and diverse issues facing children with special needs?

UNSEEN STRUGGLES: Immigrant Women and New York's Hidden Economy

1/27/03 - Undocumented immigrant women are vulnerable to workplace abuse. What can be done to prevent their mistreatment? Is the exploitation of immigrants tacitly sanctioned for the benefit of our city's economy?