Explaining the Disparity in Placement Instability among African-American and White Children in Child Welfare: A Blinder-Oaxaca Decomposition.
Foster, Michael E. Hillemeier, Marianne M. Bai, Yu.
Children and Youth Services Review
Vol. 33, No. 1 , p. 118-125
Customer Service Department 6277 Sea Harbor Drive
Orlando, FL 32887-4800
Tel: +1 (877) 839-7126
Fax: +1 (407) 363-1354
African-American children in the child welfare system are at disproportionate risk of adverse experiences including placement instability. This article compares placement instability among African-American and white children in the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being and identifies mechanisms underlying racial disparities using a Blinder-Oaxaca decomposition. The type of initial out-of-home placements contributes significantly to the racial gap in placement instability. However a large amount of racial disparity remains unexplained. Additional factors, not captured by these analyses, apparently explain African-American's increased risk of placement instability. Predictors of placement instability differ between racial groups. Among African-Americans, older age, initial placement in a setting other than kinship care, and having a higher externalizing CBCL score at baseline are associated with greater instability. Among white children, however, only initial placement in a foster care setting predicted placement instability. (Author abstract)
foster children; foster care; African Americans; racial factors; cultural competency; racial disproportionality; placement stability; placement disruption