News & Perspectives

News & Perspectives

Getting at the Heart of Caring for Children


Originally reported in The Boston Globe

 “...The American Journal of Public Health recently showed, for example, that the Massachusetts Healthy Families program, which connects young parents to home visitors and supportive services, makes a difference.

The journal reported that the small number of parents in the program who were reported to DCF were 32 percent less likely to have a second report than those in the control group. This was despite the fact that 55 percent of these parents had substantiated cases of abuse or neglect in their own childhoods and one-third had been in foster care themselves.

The study found that Healthy Families reduced homelessness and dependence on cash assistance, increased parents’ education and employment, decreased parents’ emergency room use, and reduced maternal depression. The program currently costs the Commonwealth less than $500 per family per year, with the potential to save many thousands of dollars over a child’s lifetime. Child abuse is a cycle that can be stopped."

Read the full article at The Boston Globe.