There are many child welfare-related bills to watch this legislative session. Read the Coalition’s 2022 Child Welfare Legislation Memo for a full update on how the following bills will impact tribes and how the Coalition is engaged in proposing amendments.
Several bills attempt to increase access to funding for foster youth and their caregivers. SB 1300 (Durazo) requires counties to screen nonminor dependents, including those under tribal organization jurisdiction, for Social Security Income eligibility. SB 854 (Skinner) would establish a trust fund for eligible children, including those in a Tribal Customary Adoption. AB 2306 would authorize reimbursements for property damage arising out of foster child care, including for tribally approved homes.
Other bills are aimed at strengthening family finding and improving racial equity within the system. SB 384 (Cortese) would require counties to adopt family finding best practices. Similarly, AB 1091 (Hurtado) would authorize funding for family finding. In an attempt to remove racial biases from home removal decisions, AB 2665 (Carillo) would pilot a blind removals program.
Finally, another set of bills would impact placements and adoptions. AB 2309 (Friedman) would require a court to place a child with the parent’s designated guardian if there is no clear and present threat to safety. AB 2306 (Cooley) attempts to expand available placement options for transition-aged youth by authorizing special residential facility licensure. In adoptions, AB 1794 (Gipson) would allow children or nonminor dependents to petition for parental rights to be reinstated and AB 993 (Patterson) would expand postadoption contact agreements to nonrelative extended family members.