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Third Thursday - NAACP Minneapolis, Child Welfare

  • Black Dog Cafe 308 East Prince Street Saint Paul, MN, 55101 United States (map)

Please join Stand Up Saint Paul as we host Kelis Houston from NAACP Minneapolis. Ms. Houston’s work targets the clear racial bias and disproportionate contact and conflict that African-American and multiracial families contend with from DHS and Child Protective Services in Minnesota. She will share with us some disturbing statistics and the devastating stories of those who have been inaccurately and inappropriately treated by this system. Recently, Ms. Houston appeared before the MN Legislative Task Force on Child Welfare with a proposal to combat the systemic racial biases through the establishment of an oversight committee. Click for more information about the hearing.

Our Third Thursday event will provide you with an opportunity to learn more about this issue so that you can support Ms. Houston’s efforts to bring about meaningful, if long overdue, change to a broken system. She has provided the following overview of the issues she will address at the event:

Black families are disproportionately represented in child protection and once involved, the outcomes are inequitable. Racial disparities are found in the entire child protection process, from initial reporting and assessment to discharge from the system.

Black families are over represented in rate of:

Contact with the child protection system: Black children are 4 times more likely to be subjects of child protection assessments and investigations

Reports to CPS: Black children are 5 times more likely to be a subject of a Child protection report

Out of home care: Black children are placed in out of home care at a rate 5.3 times higher than white children

Placement stability: The longer Black children remain in out of home care, the more they experience multiple moves in placement settings

Aging out of care: Black youth have high rates of reaching the age of majority when in placement for long periods of time

The Department of Human Services, current child protection legislation and county guidelines lend to the national epidemic of criminalizing Black families. We all know that healthy families are vital to the success of our children and ultimately, our communities. Everyone has a stake in ensuring Minnesota’s Child Protection system is fair and equitable.

The Minneapolis Branch NAACP composed a list of policy positions that has been presented to the Department of Human Services and other key decision makers. We have a legislative agenda and we're working with our legislators on child protection bills specific to Black youth and families. We welcome those interested in joining the fight!
For more information please contact


Earlier Event: January 18
Later Event: January 18
MN350 Welcome Event