The National Foster Care Youth & Alumni Policy Council is pleased to release its 19th priority statement: Supporting Immigrant Children & Youth in Foster Care.
Recent years have seen an increase in attention to children who enter the United States as immigrants. While the focus has largely been on those who enter via the southern border, the experiences of youth who are in both the immigration and foster care systems remain under-examined. The Council decided to elevate this topic due to direct experience by current members of navigating both systems simultaneously.
Over the last year and a half, a workgroup of 11 Council members have engaged in their priority making process on the topic of immigration and foster care. The priority making process begins with Council Member discussion, consultation with subject matter experts, and is followed by polling of fellow current and former foster youth on the topic, along with a creation of a priority document that reflects feedback from each step.
In this priority, Council members forward the following statements:
- We shouldn’t exit foster care without legal status.
- We need caseworkers who are equipped to support us in our immigration case.
- We need support in understanding, accessing, and exercising our basic human rights.
You can read the full priority, including details on the impact current policies and practices have on young people who are navigating both the immigration and foster care systems, HERE >>>.For resources on how to directly support immigrant youth in foster care, visit our partners at the Young Center of Immigrant Children’s Rights and the Center on Immigration and Child Welfare.
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Background on the Council
The Council was created in 2012, at the request of then ACF leader, George Sheldon. The Council has issued 19 priority statements to inform and educate federal stakeholders and the field on the experiences of foster youth, including the impact of policies and practices. The Council has met with ACF and Children’s Bureau leadership, key child welfare field stakeholders and Casey staff on at least an annual basis since then. The Council’s priority making process and work is reflected on nationalpolicycouncil.org.