Campus Location

Abilene Campus (Residential)

Date of Award



Document Type



Social Work

Degree Name

Master of Science

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Malcolm Scott

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Rachel Slaymaker

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Lee Ann Millender


This study explores and describes the experiences of ten dual status youth in Taylor County, Texas by examining the factors of race, sex, child welfare allegation, and juvenile justice offense. A review of the literature suggests that this population has unique challenges in and outside the courtroom, including being at increased risk for disparate outcomes in later adolescence and adulthood. This study compared single-system child welfare and juvenile justice data from Texas DFPS Region 2 and Taylor County to raw data provided on a sample of ten dual status youth identified in Taylor County from 2017–2021. Findings included a disproportionately higher representation of males and youth of color in the dual status group. Regarding child welfare allegations, Refusal to Accept Parental Responsibility allegations were associated with 50% of the dual status group, but less than 1% of all removals in Taylor County over the same time period. Regarding juvenile offenses, felonies and misdemeanors accounted for 95% of offenses in the dual status group, compared to 86% of all offenses in Taylor County over the same time period. This study is significant because it provides important data for professionals in and around the juvenile justice and child welfare systems in Taylor County to utilize when choosing the best evidence-based practices and interventions with this unique population. Additional implications of this study for policy, practice, and research are provided.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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