What Do We Know About the Return on Investment in Preventing Child Maltreatment?
Evidence Brief. Transforming Child Welfare Systems (Casey Family Programs)
Casey Family Programs.
Published: June 2019
Casey Family Programs
2001 Eighth Avenue Suite 2700
Seattle, WA 98121
This brief explains delivering programs that prevent child maltreatment not only is an effective approach to protecting children and strengthening families, but also one of the most pragmatic ways to reduce the enormous financial and societal costs incurred when children are harmed. It notes that with the Family First Prevention Services Act providing States new flexibility to spend Title IV-E funds on evidence-based prevention services, this preventive approach now has an ongoing funding mechanism to support it. Information is then provided on the cost of child maltreatment and the financial benefit of prevention and early intervention services. A chart highlights findings on cost savings related to child maltreatment prevention and family strengthening interventions. The benefit-costs ratios go beyond child welfare savings to include medical, mental health, employment, criminal justice, and other long-term savings. Strategies that can be used to assess the costs of child maltreatment at the jurisdictional level are discussed and links are provided to guides and tools that have been developed inform return on investment analyses. 25 references. (Author abstract modified)
child abuse; prevention programs; child welfare services; early intervention programs; Cost-benefit analysis; COST EFFECTIVENESS; EXPENDITURES