Family Policy Section Update

Anne Farrell, Ph.D., Section Chair
/ Fall 2019 NCFR Report

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The Family Policy Section would like to congratulate the 2019 award recipients of its two awards. We are impressed with the hard work of both of these family policy scholars and look forward to congratulating them formally at the 2019 NCFR Annual Conference in November.

Melissa Rector LaGraff, M.S., a doctoral candidate from the University of Tennessee, has been selected to receive the Feldman Outstanding Research Proposal for Research in Family Policy. Her proposal, entitled “Workplace Flexibility, Work–Family Guilt, and Parenting Behavior,” utilizes mixed methods to examine workplace flexibility, parenting behavior, and work–family guilt. Findings from this policy-relevant study will enhance understanding of family-oriented workplace policies and expand the literature on how the workplace environment influences parenting behavior.

The Feldman Internship Award was granted to Brittany Mihalec-Adkins, M.S.Ed., a doctoral student at Purdue University. She recently completed a three-semester internship with the Purdue University Center for Families and the Family Impact Institute. As a Levien Family Policy Intern, Mihalec-Adkins assisted with and led multiple efforts related to policy education for legislators, constituents, and researchers, and she engaged in policy analysis and dissemination. She has reciprocally used this experience and other efforts to engage more meaningfully in policy-oriented research as a Doris Duke and National Science Foundation graduate fellow, in her service on national child welfare advisory councils, and in her work as a Court Appointed Special Advocate.

The Family Policy Section is eager to help welcome NCFR members and other attendees at this year’s conference in Fort Worth, Texas. In addition to dozens of papers, posters, and symposia, we have planned and cosponsored several invited sessions that address and stimulate research related to child welfare, intimate partner violence, and social determinants of health.

  • Family First Prevention Services Act: Building a 21st Century Child Welfare System (Thursday, Nov. 21, 8:30 a.m.): This event provides a terrific opportunity for scholars and practitioners alike to learn how this landmark federal legislation requires jurisdictions to use evidence-based interventions and focus efforts more directly on prevention.
  • Intimate Partner Violence and Immigration: Research and Policy Perspective (Thursday, Nov. 21, 3 p.m.): This symposium features important scholarship about the intersection of two phenomena that not only are timely but also represent critical opportunities for intervention
  • Shoring Up the Capacity of Health Care, Early Childhood and Families to Prevent and Mitigate Toxic Stress: Opportunities and Challenges (Friday, Nov. 22, 4:15 p.m.). This panel includes researchers and implementers who are concerned with the impact of adverse childhood experiences across domains of functioning and the systems and supports that are implicated. The presenters are part of a national, funded collaboration that includes mixed-methods evaluation and policy analysis.

Additionally, please mark your calendar for the Family Policy Section Annual Member Meeting, followed by the Tri-Section Meeting that includes the Family Policy, Ethnic Minorities, and Families and Health Sections on Thursday, Nov. 21, at 6:45 p.m. We’ll serve a light dinner. Please join us!