The Family Advocacy and Support Tool (FAST) is the family version of the CANS and ANSA tools. The purpose of the FAST is to support effective interventions when the focus of those efforts are on entire families rather than single individuals. The most common use of the FAST is in efforts to address the needs of families who are at risk of child welfare involvement. Items identified as a ‘0’ are often strengths that can be used in strength-based planning. Items rated a ‘1’ should be monitored and preventive efforts might be indicated. Items rated a ‘2’ or ‘3’ are actionable and should be addressed in the intervention plan. The original version of the FAST, called the Multi-level Family Assessment, was developed in collaboration with Margaret Nickels, Ph.D. at the Juvenile Protection Agency in Chicago. Following its initial use in a family therapy program to prevent child abuse and neglect, this tool was further developed into the FAST in collaboration with representative of Family Support Organizations in New Jersey. Currently, the FAST is used in various applications in New York, Tennessee, and Illinois.
WHAT IS FAST?
- 0 No evidence of a need, this may be a strength
- 1 Watchful waiting/prevention
- 2 Action
- 3 Immediate or intensive action (dangerous or disabling)