Right from the Start: The Courts Catalyzing Change Preliminary Protective Hearing Benchcard

March 1, 2010

The Technical Assistance Bulletin explains the history and background of the the Courts Catalyzing Change: Achieving Equity and Fairness in Foster Care Initiative (CCC), which brings together judicial officers and other systems’ experts to set a national agenda for court-based training, research, and reform initiatives to reduce the disproportionate representation of children of color in dependency court systems.

The CCC Preliminary Protective Hearing (PPH) Benchcard, a practical and concrete judicial tool for use at the first hearing, was developed by the Call to Action Workgroup and vetted by the CCC Steering Committee and PPCD Advisory Committee. Building on the RESOURCE GUIDELINES: Improving Court Practice in Child Abuse & Neglect Cases,15 the PPH Benchcard reflects aspirational ‘best practices’ for the Preliminary Protective Hearing, one of the most critical stages in a child abuse and neglect case.

 The "Right from the Start: The Courts Catalyzing Change Preliminary Protective Hearing Benchcard Study Report -- Testing a Tool for Judicial Decision-Making" report is also available to download.