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Advocates for Families Act to assist in child welfare cases

Congressman Barry Moore intends to reduce instability and traumatic experiences in child welfare cases with a bipartisan bill.

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On Thursday, Congressman Barry Moore, R-Enterprise announced that he co-sponsored a bipartisan bill with Congresswoman Susan Wild, D-Pa., entitled the Advocates for Families Act. 

The bill intends to help families who experience challenges with the child welfare system during temporary foster care placement.

It would permit any legal guardian of a child to seek the services of a family advocate to represent them and their interests during the child welfare case and interactions. This information would be disclosed at the beginning of a child welfare case and resources to obtain this representation locally.

In recognizing this as a profession, each state will implement standards outlining the professional conduct of a family advocate.

The long-term goal is to lower the time children spend out-of-home during the transitional period in child welfare cases and the extent of their stays. 

“More than 600,000 children each year enter the United States Foster Care System, and it’s vital that these children and their families have legal guidance during this process,” said Moore. “This legislation will improve negotiations between families and the system, streamline and expedite the process, reduce stress on foster children, parents, and families, and save taxpayer dollars by decreasing the reliance on federal funding.”

Mary Claire is a reporting intern.

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