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In Florida and U.S., Aging Out Means New Issues for Foster Care Kids

In Florida and nationally, foster care was designed to provide a safe haven for society’s most vulnerable citizens – the abused, neglected and overlooked children. Yet, what happens when they “age out” — turning 18, independent and no longer wards of the state? As this article shows, in Washington state, as well as in Florida and nationwide, advocates, rights attorneys and guardians ad litem have worked tirelessly to help kids find independence once beyond the support of the foster care system.

In the article, “State’s foster care system discharges ill-equipped young adults; Despite program’s good intentions, teens are out on their own and unprepared,” The Spokane Review writes of a national issue: Kids who on their 18th birthday, some with behavioral health problems, are turned out of group or foster homes where they’d spent their lives in the state’s care. They are to start on their own — often unprepared.

“Recently cut off of the powerful psychotropic drugs that had been used to control his aggression, Tyler Dorsey ended up in the Spokane County Jail on a domestic violence charge six weeks after aging out of child welfare,” the publication wrote.

“A new state law might have protected Dorsey, who was turned away by numerous agencies because of his juvenile record of assault…[The law] entitles foster youth without a high school diploma or GED to remain in foster care until age 21 by opting into the federal Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act.”

Read the entire story here.

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