Celebrating families everywhere:
National Foster care month

Graphic for National Foster Care Month 2023

May is National Foster Care Month, during which we recognize the tens of thousands of children who are living in our national foster care, waiting for a safe and stable home. It is also a time to reflect on the state of our foster care system, which is under immense crisis. According to one study, fewer than 10,000 social workers are currently working in the foster care system. This means, on average, there is one caseworker for every 35-40 children and youth in foster care.
These caseworkers are responsible for ensuring that children in foster care receive the support and care they need, but they are often stretched too thin, with caseloads that are far too large. As a result, many children are left without the necessary resources, and their cases are not given the attention they deserve. This results in terrible cracks in the system that endanger the lives of children and families. Our office is far too familiar with the effects and toll of this fraught system.

They say that it takes a village to raise a child. We all have a responsibility to help protect children, not just because they are young and vulnerable, but also people and community members. However, some contingents of our nation are using the topic of child abuse to attack other groups, such as the LGBTQ+ community. It is sickening that political pundits and many of their supporters are utilizing the genuine harm many children are affected by to justify their hatred and prejudices.

Graphic that reads "GRAPHIC: CASE HIGHLIGHT: We attained an $8.7 million verdict against an Erie County, Pennsylvania, foster care division for a boy who was sexually terrorized by an older boy placed in his home. The boy said he suffered years of sexual abuse at the hands of a deeply disturbed foster teen who was placed in his home when he was a 9-year-old. He had to be hospitalized numerous times for debilitating psychiatric conditions stemming from the trauma of these sexual assaults. Implicated in this case are former Erie County OCY caseworkers, whom the jury believes violated the boy’s civil rights in 2001 by placing a teen with a known history of sexual offenses in a home in which a juvenile resided."

We need to take action and demand change! It’s time to pressure our lawmakers to provide the funding necessary to adequately support the foster care system. We need to ensure that caseworkers are well-rested and that every child in foster care has access to the resources they need to live a full and enriched life.

The children in our foster care system are some of the most vulnerable members of our society, and we owe it to them to do everything we can to support them. Many of these children already face significant challenges, such as mental health issues, developmental disabilities, and other trauma from the situations they are being removed from in the first place.

This National Foster Care Month, let’s come together and demand the change we need to ensure that every child in foster care has a bright and hopeful future.

How YOU can help…

Helps foster youth transition to adulthood by providing educational opportunities and support.

Supports children in foster care by providing them with essentials like duffel bags, bicycles, and other items that help them feel valued and supported.

A national advocacy organization fighting for children’s rights in foster care.

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