March 7, 2017
State Fiscal Year 2017-2018 Child Budget Recommendations
Now is the Time to Invest in Child Welfare: Not CUT Funding
Reauthorize Child Welfare Financing to Ensure Localities Have Resources to Keep Children Safe and Promote Permanency (Social Service Law Section 153-k)
The best way to help families is to prevent child abuse and neglect by strengthening and supporting families so that children can remain safely in their homes. For those children who must come into foster care, we must have a system that provides high quality services to children and parents and is able to promote permanency expeditiously.
Better Support Foster Youth Going to College
The Foster Youth Success Initiative helps support foster youth going to college. Last year, the administration supported one cohort ($1.5 million) and the Legislature supported one cohort ($1.5 million), for a total of $3 million. The Executive proposes only $1.5 million, which only supports 1 cohort.
Help Foster Children Achieve Permanency by Strengthening KinGAP
For children in foster care living with relatives, the Kinship Guardianship Assistance Program (KinGAP) is often the permanency plan in their best interests. It enables children to leave foster care to relatives without a termination of parental rights proceeding, and provides the relative with ongoing subsidy to care for the child (like foster care and adoption do.)
Since 1988, the Social Service Law has provided for a child welfare housing subsidy to help stabilize housing for families and youth and prevent children from entering foster care, help families when children reunify from foster care, and help youth who age out of foster care. Due to the low subsidy amount, the child welfare housing subsidy is no longer able to effectively prevent homelessness for families and youth involved with the child welfare system.