Senators John Kerry (D-MA), Charles Grassley (R-IA), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Ron Wyden (D-OR), and Thad Cochran (R-MS) introduced the Families for Foster Youth Stamp Act (S. 3231). In his remarks, lead sponsor Kerry recognized May as National Foster Care Month, and acknowledged the 408,000 children in foster care and the 107,000 who are eligible for adoption. He urged Congress to do more to connect children in foster care with a safe, loving, and permanent home.
This bipartisan bill would increase funding for effective programs targeted at improving permanency outcomes for youth in foster care, with profits set-aside from the sale of postage stamps. The bill proposes splitting funds between the Adoption Opportunities Program and the State Court Improvement Program (CIP). Funds going to the Adoption Opportunities Program would target programs improving permanency outcomes for youth in foster care through adoption, guardianship, or kinship care. The CIP funds could target improving quality of legal representation for the children, reducing caseloads, updating systems to be more efficient, and overall steps to improve the court’s role in achieving safe, stable and permanent homes for children.
Kerry thanked CWLA and other national organizations that have expressed support for the bill.