Katherine Dolan


This paper examines literature with regard to the advantages and disadvantages of group homes within the foster care system. Group homes are associated with a negative stigma. The bleak narrative of group care stems, in part, to stereotypes surrounding behavioral and psychiatric issues. Researchers have found children in foster care experience poor living standards, are restricted by their environments, and are unhappy in group homes. Conversely, group homes provide a sense of community in a seemingly lonely situation, provide children with safer conditions than those they were removed from, and serve as a means of housing for children with no other place to reside. In an attempt to understand the current opinions of group care, a number of studies are examined, and relevant legislation is also considered. The literature on foster care group homes concludes group care should refrain from being used until all other resources have been proven insufficient; however, current research lacks validity. The need for more reliable and valid data is necessary to reach a comprehensive conclusion, calling for further research in this area.