It is common to hear professionals express discontent about our family court system. Negativistic and pessimistic attitudes can become ingrained and self-reinforcing, as overburdened professionals repeat outdated truisms to each other and have difficulty considering new information and possibilities. These patterns stifle the potential for innovation, change, and better training.  Our interdisciplinary panel will discuss barriers to change, paradigm shifts that may be necessary to provide more effective service and better outcomes for families, and the difficult conversations that may be necessary to create improvement. We also propose concrete steps that could start a positive process.  Scientific research has identified both risks to children and potential approaches to supporting families; do we have the will to attempt them?  What could get us there?  How can we ensure that current information actually reaches decision makers?  What practical tools are available, or could be developed, to make more effective use of resources?

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will be able to identify 3 patterns of systemic and individual resistance.
  • Participants will be able to identify 3 potential strategies for bringing updated information to decision-makers
  • Participants will be able to identify both “ground up” and “top down” approaches to systemic change and dialogue across discipline