Gillibrand introduces bill for adoption and foster care home studies

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FILE – In this March 14, 2021, file photo, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., speaks during a news conference in New York. Gillibrand is on the brink of success in her years-long campaign to get sexual assault cases removed from the military chain of command.  But getting over the finish line may depend on whether she can overcome wariness about broader changes she’s seeking to the military justice system. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – On June 24, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand will be introducing the bipartisan, bicameral National Adoption and Foster Care Home Study Act of 2021. Legislation to create a national standard and database to increase the uniformity and transparency of home studies for families adopting children.

“Our outdated child welfare system can’t meet the needs of the thousands of children that enter the child welfare system every year. Congress has a responsibility to help these children find loving and stable families, and give them the opportunity to reach their full potential,” said Senator Gillibrand. “The National Adoption and Foster Care Home Study Act of 2021 would create a national standard and database for home studies so that all children have a better chance at being matched to families who will provide a caring home.”

Inconsistency in home study standards across the States has complicated the adoption process for children and resulted in a number of issues. The National Adoption and Foster Care Home Study Act attempts to make this process more efficient with three main components:

  • Creating a research-based National Adoption and Foster Care Home Study assessment standard. States who implement the national assessment standard would be eligible for funding through a demonstration program.
  • Developing and establishing a secure National Home Study Database containing information related to completed home studies in order to allow child welfare agencies across the country to more efficiently and effectively match foster and adoptive children to prospective families.
  • Instituting regular independent evaluations of the assessment standard and database.

You can go to Jared Huffman’s website to view the full legislation text.

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