CASA for Children of DC

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Washington, DC 20002

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Family Treatment Court Program

Family Treatment Court is a program through the DC Family Court for parents found neglectful due to substance abuse, with a focus on reunification. The voluntary intensive program takes a holistic approach, focusing not only on sobriety but strengthening the family as a whole for a successful future. CASAs work with all FTC youth, and, as the case moves towards reunification, work closely with the family, advocating for supports and resources to promote a strengthened parent/child relationship. Based on the CASA’s work, the program manager provides regular advocacy and updates on the children and family during weekly FTC meetings at Court. FTC is currently our largest special program. 

History of the Family Treatment Court

The District of Columbia Family Treatment Court was established in 2003, within the Superior Court of the District of Columbia’s Family Court. CASA for Children of DC has been an active stakeholder throughout its history and was part of a special team to redesign the FTC program in 2014. The goal of DC's Family Treatment Court is to promote safe and permanent homes for the children of parents struggling with substance abuse by maximizing the chance for family reunification. Since its inception, the DC Family Treatment Court has served over 200 parents and their children, over half of whom have successfully graduated and been reunified. 

Features of FTC Cases

  • CASA volunteers support every youth in Family Treatment Court  

  • The goal of FTC is always reunification with the youth's parent(s)

  • FTC CASAs not only support a youth or sibling group, but the youth's family as the case moves towards reunification 

  • FTC cases allow for increased CASA advocacy through weekly meetings attended by the Judge, the Assistant Attorney General, Recovery Specialists, a representative Parent's Attorney, and the CASA FTC Program Manager 

  • A majority of CASA's younger youth are referred through FTC; however the program serves youth of all ages

FTC CASA Volunteers

Interested in becoming an FTC CASA Volunteer? An FTC case may be right for you if:

  • You would like to serve a younger youth 

  • You are interested in supporting a reunifying family 

  • You have experience or interest in working with families impacted by substance abuse

  • You wish to have more regular opportunities for advocacy to the Court

Resources: 

Drugs, Inc. clip of PCP use in SE DC 

Yet Another Spike In K2 Overdoses Sends 67 To The Hospital

Parental Substance Use and the Child Welfare System

Trauma-Informed Care for Families Affected by Substance Use Disorders Webinar

National Family Drug Courts: Child Welfare Specific Materials and Resources

Contact:

Allison Kahn-Pauli

Senior Manager, Standards & Training

akahn@casadc.org