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Middleton Center and Drake Law Review to co-host child welfare CLE

April 9, 2016

Drake University Law School’s Joan and Lyle Middleton Center for Children’s Rights and the Drake Law Review are co-sponsoring a panel discussion and reception focused on child welfare.

Titled “Child Welfare and Our Youngest Children,” the event will be held April 22, 4:30-5:30 p.m., at the Neal & Bea Smith Law Center, 2400 University Avenue.

The event is approved for 1.0 hour of CLE credit (Activity Number: 223350).

The Middleton Center, led by the Center's director and Drake Law professor Brent Pattison, recently partnered with the Drake Law Review’s online publication, Discourse, to publish a series titled “Child Welfare and Our Youngest Children: A Series on Improving Outcomes for Families with Babies and Toddlers.”

The goal of the series was to consider the lessons learned from the Safe Babies Court Teams approach, which involves local courts, child welfare agencies, private service providers, philanthropists, and attorneys to improve the community’s response to child abuse and neglect.

The series also discusses how these lessons can inform positive changes in how the legal system serves families in Iowa and beyond.

“Professor Pattison approached me with the idea of partnering with the Middleton Center for Children’s Rights to publish this series,” said Tyler Smith, editor-in-chief of the Drake Law Review. “We hope this is the first of many joint projects with Drake Law School’s centers and clinics.”

The panel discussion will feature various child welfare experts, who will cover topics introduced in the Discourse online series.

Panelist include Pattison; Joseph W. Seidlin, district associate judge for the Fifth District of Iowa; Judy Norris, Des Moines community coordinator for the Zero to Three National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families; and Dr. Rizwan Shah, a pediatrician with more than 30 years of experience in providing expert opinion in cases of child abuse and neglect.

“The Middleton Center is proud to partner with the Drake Law Review in this effort to draw attention to the unique legal, social work, and medical issues that arise in these cases,” said Pattison.

“Nothing is more important than the most vulnerable and precious: our children,” added Ben Ullem, dean of Drake Law School. “Learning how to better keep them safe and supported is a most worthy cause, and this discussion and reception will advance that effort.”

The event is free, but registration is required. Register now online.

To read the Drake Law Review’s online publication Discourse, visit drakelawreview.org/discourse.

Established in 2001, the Joan and Lyle Middleton Center for Children's Rights advances children’s rights by providing legal representation to children in child welfare and delinquency matters, advocating for legislative changes, and providing multidisciplinary training in the area of children’s rights.

For more information, contact Christopher Merkle, online editor for the Drake Law Review, at christopher.merkle@drake.edu.