Process Evaluation of Nevada’s Statewide Dependency Mediation Program

September 6, 2017

Nevada’s experience with mediation in dependency and termination of parental rights cases began in the Second Judicial District Court, Washoe County and goes back more than a decade to the early 2000s. In 2013, the National Council of Juvenile Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) conducted a preliminary process and outcome evaluation of the program. In 2016, with funding support from the Nevada Court Improvement Program and the Victims of Crime Act, the mediation program was expanded statewide. The overarching goal of the statewide mediation program is to reduce the time to permanency for children involved in abuse and neglect cases. This statewide process evaluation primarily focuses on data obtained from exit surveys completed by participants (e.g., mothers, fathers, children, relatives, foster parents, and others) and professional/system stakeholders (e.g., social workers, deputy district attorneys, attorneys for parents, attorneys for children, and others) at the completion of their mediation sessions.