Center Projects

Active Projects

Maladaptive Parenting, Activity Spaces, and the Substance Use Environment

In this grant, we build upon and extend that work in three important ways (1) The proposed study assesses maladaptive parenting and related alcohol use during discipline events, allowing us to make statements about the incidence of alcohol-related harsh and neglectful parenting practices; (2) This prospective study uses individuals own activity spaces to understand how drinking locations and contexts may affect these relationships over time and (3) building upon our findings related to drinking locations, this study will explicitly examine parents’ use of their local alcohol environments, including how social relationships may exacerbate or hinder drinking behaviors that are related to maladaptive parenting. Funded by NIAAA P60-AA-006282

The proliferation of medical marijuana dispensaries in California is perceived to increase crime and other social problems. These assumptions will be tested in the current study. Funded by NIDA R01-DA-032715

Abusive and Neglectful Parenting Practices: Do They Differ by Race/Ethnicity?
Disparities exist in the child welfare system with Black children being over-represented and Asian children being under-represented. This study will examine whether or not this is because of differences in parenting practices or family and individual characteristics. Funded by NIH National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities, Loan Repayment Program.

Child Welfare Entry Points in California: Where are the Racial Disparities?
Disparities in the child welfare system can occur because some children may be disproportionately reported to the officials investigating child abuse and neglect. This hypothesis is being tested in the current study. Funded by NIH National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities, Loan Repayment Program.

Housing Stability Among Transition Age Youth

Youth aging out of the foster care system and young offenders reentry society after juvenile detention are among the most vulnerable young adult populations. This study examines the geographic availability of housing services for these young adults. Funded by a private donor.

Pilot Projects

DCFS Needs Portal: A Pilot Intervention to Reduce Disparities through Formalizing Informal Support
One reason Black children may be overrepresented in the child welfare system is they have less access to formal resources such as social services that may reduce abusive and neglectful parenting. This study attempts to find ways of formalizing local informal sources of support in order to reduce child maltreatment. Conducted in collaboration with Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services Torrance Office. Funded by California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC) Practice/University Partnership Grant.and Ralph M. Parsons Foundation

Completed Projects

Social Mechanisms of Child Abuse and Neglect – California 50 Cities Study

This study examines how alcohol use and alcohol outlet density are related to child physical abuse and neglect in 50 mid-size cities in California. Funded by NIAAA P60-AA-006282

Social Relationships and Changing Infrastructure: Pretest of Effects on Neighborhood Life

Phase 2 of the new Expo line in Los Angeles County will run through the Rancho Park and Cheviot Hills neighborhoods. This study examines how this new public transportation infrastructure will affect neighborly social relationships. Funded by John Randolph and Dora Haynes Foundation Faculty Fellowship.

Omaha Alcohol Outlets, Crime, and Child Maltreatment
Density of alcohol outlets has been related to rates of crime and child maltreatment in a variety of urban locations. This study examined these same relationships in a primarily rural area. Conducted in collaboration with Project Extra Mile.

The Los Angeles County Young Offender Reentry Blueprint
This project provides recommendations on best practices to assist young offenders in reentry their communities after incarceration. Conducted in collaboration with the Los Angeles Commission on Community and Senior Services. Funded by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Defining "Neighborhoods" within a "Community": Implications for Prevention (Use of T-Communities)
Neighborhood studies often suffer with determining the best unit of analysis. This study examines how trivial street communities compare to more traditional “neighborhood” units such as Census tracts or block groups.

Long Beach Child Care Availability in Los Angeles County
The availability and quality of child care services in Long Beach was assessed. This study finds that respondents are doing well with child evaluation and preparedness, engaging parents and linking them with community resources, but less so for staff support or to heighten public awareness about policy changes related to ECE. Conducted in collaboration with Long Beach Early Care and Education Committee.

Child Welfare and Service Availability
The geographic availability of social services may affect the ability of parents to adequately respond to child welfare case plans once their children have been placed in foster care due to abuse or neglect. This study examined the locations of services in relation to those areas with the highest need (as determined by entries into foster care). Funded by Child and Family Research Consortium.