In October 2020, the Strengthening Families Washington team at the Washington State Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) established a partnership with the F.I.R.S.T. (Family Intervention Response to Stop Trauma) Legal Clinic. Through this partnership, we have gained a deep understanding of this organization's valuable work and would like to increase awareness about their work.
FIRST Legal Clinic provides free legal representation and peer advocacy services for parents of newborns and pregnant parents experiencing substance use challenges and/or at risk of child welfare involvement. This is an opportunity for parents to receive wrap-around support while pregnant, through delivery, and beyond. This resource is primarily available in Region 3. However, services can be provided in counties outside of Region 3 if there is a need.
We hope that by working together in partnership, we can provide the essential support substance-using pregnant parents need and keep parent and baby safely together at delivery and beyond to prevent removal and/or establish a safety plan for reunification.
More information on the FIRST Legal Clinic can be found at https://pactrt.org/first-clinic/.