Tag Archives: Senator Mary Landrieu

Congressional Briefing on Child Welfare and Adoption

Yesterday the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth and the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute held a roundtable discussion on foster care and adoption legislative and policy priorities for the 113th Congress. Representative Karen Bass (D-CA) started off the discussion describing two priorities: 1) To convince the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to ensure youth in foster care will be eligible for Medicaid coverage up to age 26 even when moving from state to state, and 2) Passing legislation that will provide training for child welfare workers on issues involving sex trafficking of youth in foster care.

Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) spoke about her passion for adoption and her interest in pursuing initiatives to improve adoption policies.  She was followed by Representative Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) who spoke about improving education opportunities for children in foster care and opening the door to adoptions of children in Russia. Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) focused on family finding programs, especially the successful Wendy’s Wonderful Kids initiative, and the need to expand such family finding efforts
to more areas around the country.

Senate Caucus on Foster Youth Holds Forum on Adoption Disruption

Yesterday the Senate Caucus on Foster Youth held a forum on Capitol Hill regarding adoption disruption. Co-chairs Senators Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Mary Landrieu (D-LA) opened the forum with thanks to the former foster youth on the panel and in the audience who came to share their stories about overcoming difficult challenges.

Grassley called on more scrutiny of adoption disruptions to determine what policy changes are needed. Landrieu spoke about the many difficulties facing youth as they age out of foster care and who are adopted.

There were a number of youth at the forum who are participating in the Foster Youth Internship  program through the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. Many of these youth spoke of their experiences with adoption. In addition Dr. Richard Barth, Dean of the School of Social Work at the University of Maryland presented data and research from his work on this issue. He highlighted the lack of any recent research on adoption disruptions and made the point that none of the existing longitudinal studies including the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-being, the National Survey of Family Growth, and the National Survey of Adoptive Parents, will tell us much about adoption disruption. A number of recommendations were made to reform and improve federal policy including providing more support for post adoption services and more funding for research into best practices.