Denver Skyline

44th National Child Welfare Law Conference

2021: From Crisis to innovation: Toward a Family-Centered Justice System

August 16–18 2021, in Denver, CO

The theme of the 2021 conference was From Crisis to Innovation: Toward a Family-Centered Justice System. During this year’s conference, we sought to capture our learning through the pandemic, our ability to work differently and in many instances better, and our common interesting expanding innovative practices. And as our lives have radically changed, we also need to radically change our perspectives about the families we serve, to authentically engage our clients, to resist and deconstruct systemic racism and anti-LGBTQIA+ policies. It was incumbent upon all of us to pause, to listen and learn from our clients, to interrogate our own biases, to learn the history of structural racism, to acknowledge white privilege, and to be an ally and zealous advocate for a family-centered justice system.

To advance this fundamental change in mindset, NACC was proud to share the expertise of many faculty members with lived experience in child protection, juvenile, and criminal legal systems. As an organization, we are committed to incorporating lived expertise and race equity in our work, even – and especially – when it is uncomfortable. We should all be challenged by what we hear and learn and take meaningful steps toward implementing new and renewed practices at home, with the support of this national community of colleagues.

View the program from this conference as a PDF.

NACC Upcoming Conferences

The National Association of Counsel for Children has held a national conference every year since our our founding in 1977. Our conferences are a time for community, information-sharing, and dialogue as we redefine advocacy and support a movement to end racism and bias in child welfare. Join us!