Illinois Department of Children and Family Services
FFY 2011 Annual Progress and Services Report
Illinois University; Central Region by Illinois State University and Southern Region by
Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville.
The action teams were asked to choose two of the following permanency goals.
Decrease the disproportionate number of African American children in the child welfare
Prevent children from coming into substitute care.
Increase the number of children reunified with their families.
Reduce the time it takes for a child to be adopted.
The action teams have been developing plans around their selected goals and are regularly
provided permanency data from their local community. This data assists with planning. These
teams have continued to elicit an array of community stakeholders to participate in local
analysis and shared decision-making on issues affecting permanency.
The action teams are designed to build relationships with judges, law enforcement personnel,
educators, birth and foster parents, other state agencies, private agency providers, community
activists, faith-based representatives, former youth in care and many other stakeholders in the
community. These relationships are helping to break down system barriers that should lead to
great improvement in permanency outcomes. The action teams are therefore a critical
component of the Department’s emphasis on empowering communities to better protect and
serve their families.
Region-Centered Transformation Teams
The momentum of the state-wide symposiums and Action Teams predictably gave rise to the
need to further study and develop specific interventions to address the disproportionate number
of children of color in care and the disparate outcomes prevalent among these children in the
Illinois child welfare system. Institutional or structural racism is viewed as the foundation for
the disproportional number of children in care as well as for the disparate outcomes
experienced by families of color. To create the capacity to engage in this critical pathway, the
Department enlisted technical support from Crossroads and the Peoples Institute, two
organizations specializing in anti-racism work.
Each region has established and sustained a Regional Transformation Team. The Central
Region’s Transformation Team completed its training in April of 2009 and has finalized a
strategic plan titled “Promoting Racial Equity in the Child Welfare System”. This plan was
presented to the Director of the Department in January of 2011. The plan has been accepted by
the Director and the Transformation Team charged with establishing an Implementation Plan to
effect the various recommendations. The Northern Region is engaged in providing ten (10) 2
½ day trainings on “Undoing Racism” for their Action Teams’ stakeholders. No fewer than
four (4) foster parents are on each of the Northern Region teams. These trainings will be
completed in the Northern Region in 2011.
The three Cook Regions (North, Central and South) and the Southern Region all began their
Transformation Team training in 2010 and have completed their training. Each of these teams
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