Weekly News Digest: December 7th through December 14th

Foster Care News 

  • The New York Daily News reports that according to the NY Administration for Children’s Services (ACS), the number of children in foster care in NY has dropped to just under 9,000. NY ACS has released their Foster Care Strategic Blueprint Status Report which includes statistics on children currently in foster care. The report also demonstrates that less children returned to foster care after being reunified with family or placed with kin.
  • In New York, Governor Cuomo recently signed legislation that makes it easier for close relatives and family friends to receive financial support for kinship guardianship agreements (KinGap). The Chronicle of Social Change reports that previously only caregivers related to the child through blood, marriage or adoption could receive KinGap subsidies.
  • The Annie E. Casey Foundation released a report on the economic well-being of youth transitioning from foster care who participated in the Opportunity Passport program. The Opportunity Passport program is a matched savings program that seeks to improve the financial capability of youth transitioning from care. The program is part of the Jim Casey Initiative.

DAI Reflection: Ensuring child and family focused care in the foster care system is essential. Programs that think creatively about transitioning youth, the role of kin, and how to prioritize family preservation are critical to ensuring strong kids and families.

Intercountry Adoption

  • The Chronicle of Social Change writes about their interview with Suzanne Lawrence, who has succeeded Ambassador Susan Jacobs as Special Advisor for Children’s Issues. Ambassador Jacobs has retired from her post. According to the article, some of Ambassador Lawrence’s priorities in her new role include encouraging other countries to implement The Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption and addressing barriers to intercountry adoption.

DAI Reflection: Ethics and transparency are necessary for all types of adoption and children’s services, whether domestic or intercountry. We all must stay focused on implementing policies and procedures that prioritize the health and well-being of children ensure their best interest at every level of decision making.

Transracial Adoption

  • A New York Times article recounts the racial tensions of the late 1950’ in parts of Illinois and a couple’s tortured decision to not proceed with a transracial adoption. The article recounts the impact of the adoption experience and the many layers of intricacy within this experience, particularly as it relates to differences in race, class and culture.

DAI Reflection: The impact of race, class and culture in adoption is profound. This is an incredibly complex experience with many layers of intricacies. We all must become better at having candid and authentic conversations about these experiences.