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Rapid Return of Children in Residential Care to Family as a Result of COVID-19: Scope, challenges, and recommendations
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, some governments have mandated that residential care providers rapidly return children and youth to family. Survey data from 67 organizations revealed that rapid return was characterized by compressed timelines that did not allow for adequate child and family assessment and preparation. However, all respondents indicated they believed at least some families would be able to remain intact safely with appropriate support. Primary concerns for children and families related to unresolved antecedents to separation, lack of economic capacity, limited monitoring, and lack of access to education. This paper makes nine recommendations for service providers supporting these children and families.