Child Health Publications

Healthy Beginnings, Healthy Futures


Healthy Beginnings, Healthy Futures: A Judge's Guide

This seminal resource for judges and advocates explores the latest information to ensure the health and well-being of very young children who enter the child welfare system. Infant brain development, caregiver attachment, medical and mental health, and permanency planning strategies are key themes.

Psychotropic Medication Brief Cover


Psychotropic Medication and Children in Foster Care: Tips for Advocates and Judges, October 2011

Children who enter foster care face many changes and challenges that can lead to mental health disorders treated with psychotropic medications. Medication can be part of a successful intervention and treatment plan, but can pose risks too. This brief prepares advocates and judges with the latest information on psychotropic medication use, benefits and risks, critical questions to ask, and recommendations for best practice.

Practice and Policy Brief


Advocating for Very Young Children in Dependency Proceedings: The Hallmarks of Effective, Ethical Representation, October 2010

Attorneys representing very young children can profoundly influence the health, development, and well-being of their clients. This brief sets out four hallmarks of advocacy to enhance effectiveness of representation and strengthen an attorney’s ability to handle ethical dilemmas.



Visitation with Infants and Toddlers in Foster Care: What Judges and Attorneys Need to Know

Safe and effective visitation is particularly important to the healthy development of very young children. This brief explores the role of visitation in permanency planning, key elements of successful visitation plans, and promising community approaches

Read a shorter version in the ABA Child Law Practice or in the ABA Child CourtWorks.

Healing the Youngest Children


Healing the Youngest Children: Model Court-Community Partnerships, March 2007

Several innovative programs apply research to court practices to improve outcomes for maltreated infants, toddlers and their families. This brief highlights these programs and shares sample cases and tips for implementing successful partnerships.