Role of State Faith Community Liaisons in Charitable Choice Implementation. Research Questions Addressed by the FCL Study


The Role of State Faith Community Liaisons in Charitable Choice Implementation aimed to address five basic sets of research questions:

  1. What is the current status of the FCL function across states? Specifically, among states with FCLs, what is the defined role of the FCL? What legislation or regulations establish or define this role? How do levels of institutional support for the function differ across states? How has the role evolved over time? What is the broader policy, economic/budgetary, and social context within which the FCL operates?
  2. How are FCL characteristics  such as specific duties, overall mandate, personal background of leadership and/or staff, evident effectiveness, outreach and inreach efforts to FBO communities and public agencies, and legal status of the function  associated with an accurate understanding and communication of Charitable Choice and equal treatment rules to potential or actual contractors at the state level?
  3. How have FCLs contributed to observable changes in the way states reach out to and partner with FBOs in their sites? How and why has this evolved over time?
  4. What models of FCL implementation and activity appear to be the most promising in promoting partnerships with FBOs and in encouraging effective implementation of Charitable Choice rules?
  5. What kinds of information or guidance on effective practices can help states and FCLs support state-FBO partnerships and Charitable Choice implementation?

Those five sets of questions guided the research teams data collection and analysis activities and essentially required that we:

  • Assess the current status of the FCLs
  • Learn about the FCLs policies and practices for fulfilling their roles
  • Gauge FCLs effectiveness in expanding FBO-government partnerships and facilitating key stakeholders accurate understanding of Charitable Choice, and
  • Assess how the FCLs status and practices appear to be linked to their relative effectiveness.

This report describes the results of those efforts.

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