Legal Rights

Parents’ legal rights in child welfare proceedings vary from state to state, and even in different cities. Work with your lawyer or a parent advocate to learn more about your rights. Rise’s interviews with lawyers offer guidance on your rights and responsibilities.

New SCR Legislation Took Effect January 1st: What it Means for Parents

At the start of 2022, legislation went into effect that changes how New York State’s Statewide Central Registry (SCR) operates. The legislation was developed and pushed forward by parent activists and allies to reduce the harm and scope of the SCR, which particularly impacts Black and Latinx families and communities.

Here, Chris Gottlieb, Co-Director of NYU Law School’s Family Defense Clinic, details what has changed, how the legislation will be implemented, parents’ rights related to the SCR and how to prepare for a fair hearing. NYU Law School’s Family Defense Clinic partners with parent activists and legal defense organizations on legislative advocacy to push the family defense movement forward.  

Know Your Rights: State Central Register

Rise and MLS offered this Facebook event on December 16, 2020 for parents, parent advocates and community members to learn about the SCR. The information in the presentation can help people to clear their records so they can get meaningful work.

Parental Designation: A Way of Planning for the Expected and Unexpected

Throughout our 2020 series, Fighting for Our Rights, Rise has highlighted information about parents’ legal rights and representation — both to prevent child welfare system involvement and to protect your family if ACS does become involved. 

Parental designation is a legal option in New York that allows a parent to designate someone you trust to temporarily take care of your child, while maintaining your parental rights and without ACS becoming involved.

Here, Jessica Prince, Policy Counsel … Read More

Visiting Hours

How to advocate for time with your child

Vivek Sankaran, clinical assistant professor of law in the Child Advocacy Law Clinic at the University of Michigan, explains how parents can advocate for the best visits possible.

Q: What right do parents have to visits?A: Every state has different minimum requirements. Most have at least onehour a week. But that’s the minimum, not the maximum parents should see a child.

Visits should start immediately after placement. There’s … Read More

On the Right Track

Working with your lawyer to get your children back.

Maxine Ketcher, senior staff attorney at Legal Services for New York City–Bronx, explains how your lawyer can help you get to reunification – and get the services you need to support your family

Q: How do parents know they’re on track to reunification?A: If you’re on track, you should be getting increased visits, especiallyunsupervised visits. If your visitation isn’t increased over a period of six months, even … Read More

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