The Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families (DSCYF), now known officially here at BD known as the Kids Department (someone introduce a bill now to officially change the name) is charged with providing transitional and independent living services for foster youth ages 14 to 21.
The Division of Family Services (DFS) within the Kids Department contracts for case management services for foster youth ages 16 to 21, with services designed to promote self-sufficiency and responsible living for young adults who are aging out of foster care. Participants receive life skills training and personal development, mentoring, tuition assistance, and support with transitional housing.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government provided additional funding to support young adults who were eligible for independent living services until age 27. The intent was to provide additional support for youth and mitigate the impact of the pandemic on their housing and employment status. This program was successful and the DFS has decided to continue providing independent living services for youth until age 23 past the October 2021 expiration date of the new program. The program was extended until September 2022. But at that point, the statutory authority and funding for this program will be exhausted.
So House Bill 271 will grant the DFS in the Kids Department the full and permanent statutory authority to continue providing transitional and independent living services for youth until age 23.
The House has already passed this bill 36-3-2. Ruth Briggs King, Rich Collins and Charles Postles voted no. Andria Bennett and Daniel Short missed the vote.
|House Bill 271 Sponsors||Yes Votes||No Votes|
|Heffernan, Chukwuocha, Dorsey Walker, Griffith, Minor-Brown, Bolden, Kowalko, Lambert, Longhurst, Lynn, Moore, Morrison, Gray, M.Smith||House Passes 38-3. Baumbach Bentz Bolden Brady Bush Carson Chukwuocha Cooke Dorsey-Walker Griffith Heffernan K.Johnson K.Williams Kowalko Lambert Longhurst Lynn Matthews Minor-Brown Mitchell Morrison Osienski S.Moore Schwartzkopf Wilson-Anton Dukes Gray Hensley M.Smith Morris Ramone Shupe Smyk Spiegelman Vanderwende Yearick||Briggs King, Collins, Postles, D.Short (Absent), Bennett (Absent)|
|Lockman, Ennis, Gay, Hansen, Sokola, Walsh, Lopez|
|Current Status:||Senate Health & Social Services 1/27/22|