Child Welfare Budget Sign-On Letter

Budget-FY-2016-LetterFirst Focus Campaign for Children along with Children’s Defense Fund, Foster Family-based Treatment Association, Generations United, National Foster Care Coalition, CWLA and Voice for Adoption are circulating the attached sign-on letter urging support for the Administration’s FY 2016 child welfare budget proposals that seek to strengthen and make targeted investments in services and supports for abused and neglected children, including those in foster care across the country. Specifically, the letter urges support for several critical initiatives outlined within the Administration’s FY2016 Budget:

Specifically, the letter urges support for several critical initiatives outlined within the Administration’s FY2016 Budget:

  • Increase federal investments on the front-end of the child welfare service delivery system to prevent removals and foster care placements for children by allowing title IV-E funds to be used for evidence-based and evidence-informed pre-placement services for candidates for foster care and post-placement services. This includes supports and services for children who have been diverted from the child welfare system and placed with kin.
  • Amend title IV-E to promote specialized family-based care as an alternative to congregate care for children with behavioral health needs and provide oversight when congregate placements are used.
  • Create a five-year Administration for Children and Families/Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services demonstration to encourage states to implement evidence-based psychosocial interventions to improve outcomes for children and youth in foster care suffering from trauma, while reducing the current over-prescription of psychotropic medications for foster children.
  • Allow title IV-E agencies to use Chafee Foster Care Independence Program funds to serve young people formerly in foster care through the age of 23.
  • Provide enhanced capacity building funds for Indian tribes, tribal organizations or consortia that are approved to operate a title IV-E program to assist with implementing the program.

The sign-on letters will be addressed to the Chairman and Ranking members of the Senate Finance and Chairman and Ranking members of the House Human Resources Subcommittee of the Committee on Ways & Means.

For any questions, please feel free to email Shadi Houshyar at shadih@firstfocus.org.

Please note that the deadline to sign on to this letter has passed.