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State Creates Foster Parent Bill Of Rights

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The Indiana Department of Child Services has unveiled a foster parent bill of rights, as mandated by 2018 legislation. (Lauren Chapman/IPB News)

The Indiana Department of Child Services has unveiled a foster parent bill of rights, as mandated by 2018 legislation.

A foster advocate says the document will help establish expectations for both parents and the agency.

The foster parent bill of rights has five so-called articles: communication, safety and privacy, support, collaboration, and respect. Indiana Foster and Adoptive Parents CEO Kristi Cundiff says the document is important to improving DCS’s relationship with the foster care community.

“It’s just creating that partnership and that mutual understanding of the expectation levels from both parties,” Cundiff says.

Cundiff says now, she wants to see DCS make sure caseworkers understand their responsibilities and expectations, which are laid out in the document.

“We know that have a high turnover rate and so I think everybody needs to be trained in the foster parent bill of rights,” Cundiff says.

Provisions include timely notification of court hearings and meetings, as well as access to training for foster parents.

Want to contact your legislators about an issue that matters to you? Find out how to contact your senators and member of Congress here.

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