DSW Candidate –Melissa Wilkinson, MSW, 1:00 PM – 2:15 PM


Virtual Showcase of DSW Scholars 2024 Event!

Addressing Barriers to Mental Healthcare through Integrated Community Psychoeducation Groups

DSW Candidate –Melissa Wilkinson, MSW

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

1:00 PM – 2:15 PM Eastern Time Zone

Credit Hours: 1.0

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The Intersectionality of Maternal Substance Usage, the Inequitable Distribution of Social Resources, and the Child Welfare System

The involuntary involvement of substance-using mothers and their substance-affected families with the child welfare system has allowed for the systematic traumatization and destruction of substance-affected families. Once involved with the child welfare system, the inequitable distribution of social resources, oppressive practices, and biased perceptions have further compounded the challenges faced by substance-affected families. Understanding the intimate and complex relationship that exists between substance-using mothers, their substance-affected families, social resource equity, and the child welfare system is critical to overcoming child welfare’s reactive and punitive practices. This presentation will explore the punitive evolution of our current child welfare system, as well as the historical origins of invidious social resource distribution.

Participants will gain insight into how the inequitable distribution of social resources exacerbates the consequences faced by substance-using mothers and their substance-affected families. By illuminating the connections between the child welfare system, the inequitable distribution of social resources, and substance-affected families, the aim is to catalyze a shift in child welfare -from reactive and punitive practices and beliefs to proactive and preservation policies and practices. The intent of this presentation is to empower change and growth throughout the entirety of the child welfare system, thus creating a more just and inclusive approach to serving and supporting substance-affected families involved with the child welfare system.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Recognize the terminology used throughout child welfare systems
  2. Describe the cyclical relationship between social resources and the child welfare system
  3. Examine how the reciprocal relationship between current child welfare practices and social resource inequities allows for the systematic destruction of substance-affected families involuntarily involved with the child welfare system • Evaluate how the development of indiscriminate social resources and the implementation of family preservation initiatives into child welfare is a critical component of protecting families.

Delivery Method: Live Interactive Training via Zoom Video Conferencing

Credit Hours: 1.0 (ACE)

Target Audience: This conference is intended for social workers and students.


Accreditation: University of Kentucky College of Social Work, Provider # 1377, is approved as an ACE provider to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Regulatory boards are the final authority on courses accepted for continuing education credit. ACE provider approval period: 9/29/22-9/29/25. Social workers participating in this conference will receive up to 15 general continuing education credits.

Claiming CE Credit: Instructions for claiming CE credit will be disseminated at the beginning of each session.

Questions: If you have any questions regarding CE credit or to report a grievance, please contact Melissa Whitaker at melissa.whitaker@uky.edu. For technical assistance, please contact lmshelp@uky.edu.