Blue Ribbon Commission Recommends State Foster Care Changes

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, May 12, 2009

State officials hope to use federal stimulus dollars to make sweeping changes in California’s foster care system.
That’s among recommendations a Blue Ribbon Commission released at the state capitol today (Tuesday, 5.12).

Capital Public Radio's Steve Shadley reports...


There are about 75-thousand kids in California’s foster care system...that’s more than any other state.  The commission just spent three years evaluating California’s program.  It concludes there aren’t enough case workers to handle the workload and foster kids don’t always get the best care possible.
The commission is chaired by State Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno.  He says given California’s budget crisis, the state is applying for federal stimulus dollars to improve foster care... 
“We hope that these recommendations will have the ultimate affect of actually reducing the number of children in foster care.  But we think that if we devote these resources to serve children in foster care...that the costs of foster care will go down...”
Moreno says he’s uncertain how much money California could get from the stimulus package.  He’s also pushing state lawmakers to approve a bill that would extend the foster care age limit from 18 to 21.  He says that would make California eligible for another 71-million in federal dollars for foster care.