The New Road Project
Expanding the Foster Care Bill of Rights
This is legislation authored and submitted by The New Road Project.
It will expand the purview of the bipartisan foster care bill of rights that already exists in statute as of 2018.
Adopting this amendment through expansion will:
1.Provide that all clients of DCYF are granted the same rights as those provided under current law to foster care clients. Prior to entering foster care, all children first encounter the system through the assessment process, which can last for months. Further, it often takes multiple assessments before a child is removed from their home and placed in care, or a different outcome is determined. Children should have the provision of the rights established in this amendment from their first contact with DCYF or any of its providers to maximize positive outcomes and minimize harm.
2. Make it clear that these rights establish a mandatory standard of care which is based on the “best interests of the child” standard and that all decisions made on behalf of a child are done so using an approach that will minimize further trauma to a child.
3. Mandate that DCYF personnel and their contracted agents and providers are held accountable for protecting these rights.
4. Provide that notice of these rights be provided to all DCYF clients, that these rights will be periodically reviewed with clients, and establish a procedure for redress if a client feels those rights have not been adhered to.
How to Support this Legislation:
-Attend and testify at the hearing before the Children and Family Law Committee on Tuesday, March 2, 2020 at 1 PM in Room 206 of the Legislative Office Building at 33 N. State St. Concord.
-Submit written testimony in support to by Monday, March 1, 2020. This testimony will be delivered to the Committee by a member of TNRP on Tuesday.
Documents to Help: Form Letter of Support Explanation of the bill text and amendment