Foster Care Justice Alliance

Defending the Rights of the Child

http://www.FosterJustice.com

 

Legislative Update

March 10, 2009

 

To subscribe or unsubscribe to these updates: http://www.fosterjustice.com/about/contact.htm

 

 

"For more than a decade weíve watched as children under Child Protective Services' care have been abused and beaten to death, foster parents have been alienated, and dozens of lawsuits have been filed," she said. "All attempts to force the Childrenís Administration to make improvements and protect Washington children have failed."

Sen. Val Stevens, 39th District

Legislator rebukes childrenís agency

The Columbian, June 24, 2008

 

STATUS:

 

PASSED UNANIMOUS IN SENATE - Sent to the HOUSE:

       SB 5431: Children returning to foster care return to the same foster family

       SB 5510: Encouraging Early Engagement of All Parenting Resources (Senate version)

       SB 5811: Strengthens the Ombudsman (and other issues - see below)

 

NOW ON THE HOUSE FLOOR:

       HB 1782: Encouraging Early Engagement of All Parenting Resources (House version)

 

STILL IN SENATE RULES:

       SB 5803: Informing Adoptive Parents of the Limitations of Adoption Support

 

 

ACTION ITEMS:

 

       Contact your senators in Senate Rules: Please bring SB 5803 to a vote.If this bill doesnít get to the Senate floor by Thursday, itís dead.Prospective adoptive parents deserve honesty.

       Contact your both your representatives: Please vote YES on HB 1782

 

 

UPDATE

 

Thanks to you, our bills are moving forward, but still need your help.The deadline to get out of the house of origin is this Thursday, March 12.Bills that do not make this deadline are dead.All our bills made it out of committee, but we still need to help SB 5803 get to the Senate floor for a vote.The senators on the list below are the ones that can make it happen.There are lots of bills competing for attention; the ones that make it are the ones whose supporters make the most noise.That's where you come in.

 

SB 5803 requires the department to inform prospective adoptive parents of the limitations of adoption support, in particular, that it will not provide for residential care services.Too many parents that adopt high needs, high risk children are not adequately informed of the risks involved.While most children will not require such intensive care, for those that do, it can bankrupt their family.Contact your lawmakers, and tell them that adoptive parents deserve to know the truth before they adopt.

 

If you donít know who your legislators are, use the district finder: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder.Or just call the toll-free number 1-800-562-6000.The operators will help you figure out your district.Ask to pass a message to all your legislators to vote YES on HB 1782, SB 5803, and to support the Foster Justice legislation.

 

Youíll notice that this e-mail has been sent from our new e-mail list server, using the fosterjustice@live.com e-mail address.The siritalaw@winisp.net address is being phased out, although mail sent there will be forwarded to our new address for a time.This upgrade means that individuals can subscribe/unsubscribe to these mails without requiring me to do it manually.As our direct subscriber list nears 2000 and our indirect subscribers already top 5000, this was long overdue!You can add/remove yourself from the list directly on our website: http://www.fosterjustice.com/about/contact.htm.

 

Thank you!

 

Gary Malkasian

FCJA President

 

 

Senator†††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Phone††††††††††††††††††††††††† E-mail

Franklin, Rosa ††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7656†††††††††† franklin.rosa@leg.wa.gov

Hewitt, Mike†††††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7630†††††††††† hewitt.mike@leg.wa.gov

Brown, Lisa †† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7604†††††††††† brown.lisa@leg.wa.gov

Eide, Tracey †††††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7658†††††††††† eide.tracey@leg.wa.gov

Fraser, Karen ††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7642†††††††††† fraser.karen@leg.wa.gov

Haugen, Mary Margaret †††††††† (360) 786-7618†††††††††† haugen.marymargaret@leg.wa.gov

Kauffman, Claudia †††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7692†††††††††† kauffman.claudia@leg.wa.gov

Keiser, Karen ††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7664†††††††††† keiser.karen@leg.wa.gov

King, Curtis ††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7626†††††††††† king.curtis@leg.wa.gov

Kohl-Welles, Jeanne ††††††††††† (360) 786-7670†††††††††† kohl-welles.jeanne@leg.wa.gov

Marr, Chris ††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7610†††††††††† marr.chris@leg.wa.gov

Murray, Ed †††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7628†††††††††† murray.edward@leg.wa.gov

Parlette, Linda Evans ††††††††††† (360) 786-7622†††††††††† parlette.linda@leg.wa.gov

Pridemore, Craig ††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7696†††††††††† pridemore.craig@leg.wa.gov

Regala, Debbie ††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7652†††††††††† regala.debbie@leg.wa.gov

Schoesler, Mark††††††††† †††††††††† (360) 786-7620†††††††††† schoesler.mark@leg.wa.gov

Stevens, Val †††††††††††††† ††††††††††† (360) 786-7676†††††††††† stevens.val@leg.wa.gov

Zarelli, Joseph††††††††††† †††††††††† (360) 786-7634†††††††††† zarelli.joseph@leg.wa.gov

 

 

 

Donít know who your representatives are? Click here: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder

All e-mail addresses: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/memberemail

 

Toll Free Legislative Hotline: 1-800-562-6000

FCJA 24-hour Message Line: 1-484-288-4364

Foster Care Justice Alliance, P.O. Box 233, Woodinville, WA 98072-0233

 

http://www.FosterJustice.com

http://www.SiritaLaw.com

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Foster Care Justice Alliance is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.Tax deductable donations can be made online, by mail, or in person at any Bank of America branch (WA State): http://www.fosterjustice.com/donate/donate.htm

 

 

 

 

SB 5510/ HB 1782 Regarding notification in dependency matters

Senate Status: 5510 - PASSED IN THE SENATE - SENT TO THE HOUSE

House Status: 1782 - NOW ON THE HOUSE FLOOR FOR A VOTE

 

Proposed by FCJA, Encouraging Early Engagement of All Parenting Resources

Supported by the Child Welfare Advocacy Coalition

 

 

 

Download our position paper here: http://www.fosterjustice.com/leg/Encouraging%20Early%20Engagement%20of%20All%20Parenting%20Resources.doc

 

 

ACTION ITEM: Contact your representatives: PLEASE VOTE YES on HB 1782

 

 

SB 5803 Making Changes to the Adoption Support Program

Senate Status: IN SENATE RULES COMMITTEE

Proposed by the Washington Adoptive Families Alliance

 

This bill requires full disclosure of the limits of the Adoption Support Program at least 6 full months before the adoption of a child.Many adoptive families have been told that the Adoption Support Program would provide necessary services for their child prior to the adoption being finalized.When their child needed services, they discovered that the Adoption Support Program did not provide the services they had been promised.

 

ACTION ITEM: Contact your senators on the Senate Rules Committee: PLEASE BRING 5803 to the Senate Floor for a VOTE!

 

 

SB 5811 Concerning foster care placements

Status: PASSED IN THE SENATE - SENT TO THE HOUSE

 

This bill has been heavily amended.It no longer resembles the original bill.This is what it now contains:

 

 

The part of the bill that strengthens the OFCO is something that FCJA advocated.Currently, if someone complains of retaliation, the Ombudsman is required to put it in their annual report.This bill puts more teeth into what they can do.

 

ACTION ITEM: Thank your senators for voting unanimously for this bill.

 

 

SB 5431 Regarding placement of a child returning to out-of-home care

Status: PASSED IN THE SENATE - SENT TO THE HOUSE

 

Proposed by FCJA, Continuity of Care and the Importance of Psychological Relationships

 

If a child returns home, and then returns to foster care, this bill requires the department to place the child with the same foster family, if the family is willing and available, and in the best interest of the child.Revised language adds greater flexibility to place with the most significant previous foster placement, and allows the child to voice his or her desires.

 

ACTION ITEM: Thank your senators for voting unanimously for this bill.

 

 

SB 5988 Visitation by caregivers in dependency matters

Status: Referred to Human Services & Corrections

 

Proposed by FCJA, Continuity of Care and the Importance of Psychological Relationships

 

This bill is an implementation of Recommendation #6 from our foster care policy think tank report.It would allow a caregiver to petition the court for visitation of a child in dependency.

 

This bill will be heard in the Senate after the policy cut-off date.This means it will not get enacted this year, but we will have a chance to start the conversation.Continue to contact your legislators in support of this bill, and tell your stories.

 

ACTION ITEM: Ask Sen. Hargrove to schedule this bill for a hearing.

 

 

Toll Free Legislative Hotline: 1.800.562.6000

Find out who are your legislators: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder

E-mail addresses for all lawmakers: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/memberemail

 

FCJA Facebook Page: http://apps.facebook.com/causes/202325

http://www.FosterJustice.com