House Passes Bill With Key Older Youth Provision

On Tuesday, June 20th, The House of Representatives passed a series of foster care related bills, including Improving Services for Older Youth in Foster Care Act, which would expand the John H. Chafee Foster Care to Independence Program from age 21 to 23.  It would allow youth to use educational vouchers until the age of 25, expanding the age for eligibility by three years from age 23 and redistributes unexpended funds across states that apply for additional funds. These changes are consistent with some of the recommendations in the Foster Care Work Group’s policy agenda.  Other provisions would:

  • make it easier for children in foster care to be placed with a relative, by encouraging states to reduce licensing barriers that may prevent or delay these placements.

  • Authorize federal funding to help states move from paper to electronic systems for placing children across states lines

  • Make improvements to the Regional Partnership Grants that support families affected by parental substance use

  • Allow states to use Title IV-E for children placed with families in a family based residential substance abuse treatment program