Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008
- Created a new plan option for States and Tribes to provide kinship guardianship assistance payments under title IV-E on behalf of children who have been in foster care of whom a relative is taking legal guardianship
- Extended eligibility for Medicaid to children receiving kinship guardianship assistance payments
- Amended the Chafee Foster Care Independence Program to allow services to youth who leave foster care for kinship guardianship or adoption after age 16
- Amended the Education and Training Voucher Program to permit vouchers for youth who enter into kinship guardianship or are adopted from foster care after age 16
- Permitted States to extend title IV-E assistance to otherwise eligible youth remaining in foster care after reaching age 18 and to youth who at age 16 or older exited foster care to either a kinship guardianship or adoption, provided that they have not yet reached age 19, 20, or 21, as the State may elect, and are in school, employed, engaged in another activity designed to remove barriers to employment, or incapable of doing so due to a documented medical condition (effective October 1, 2010)
- Extended the Adoption Incentive Program through FY 2013 and doubled incentive payment amounts for special needs (to $4,000) and older child adoptions (to $8,000)
- Required title IV-E agencies to identify and notify all adult relatives of a child, within 30 days of the child's removal, of the relatives' options to become a placement resource for the child
- Required each child receiving a title IV-E foster care, adoption, or guardianship payment to be a full-time student unless he or she is incapable of attending school due to a documented medical condition
- Required title IV-E agencies to make reasonable efforts to place siblings removed from their home in the same foster care, adoption, or guardianship placement
- Required States to ensure coordination of health care services, including mental health and dental services, for children in foster care
- Required that, 90 days prior to a youth's emancipation, the caseworker develop a personalized transition plan as directed by the youth
- Required that a case plan include a plan for ensuring the educational stability of the child in foster care
Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006
Signed into law by U.S. President George W. Bush on July 27, 2006, the legislation ensures that convicted sex offenders of children will be mandated to update their whereabouts every month instead of once a year as previously required and makes failure to do so a felony. The legislation also:
- Establishes a national database which will incorporate the use of DNA evidence collection and tracking of convicted sex offenders with Global Positioning System technology.
- Increases the mandatory minimum incarceration period of 25 years for kidnapping or maiming a child and 30 years for sex with a child younger than 12 or for sexually assaulting a child between 13 and 17 years old.
- Increases the penalties for sex trafficking of children and child prostitution.
- Widens funding to assist local law enforcement in tracking sexual exploitation of minors on the internet.
- Creates a National Child Abuse Registry to protect children from being adopted by convicted child abusers.
Safe and Timely Interstate Placement of Foster Children Act of 2006
The Act will facilitate the adoption of children in foster care in the following ways:
- Adds new federal requirements relating to the placement of children in foster care across state lines, ensuring that receiving states complete required home studies (assessment of the suitability of a possible placement) of prospective adoptive families within 60 days of receiving the request from the state with responsibility for the child;
- Authorizes payment of incentives of $1,500 per interstate home study for home studies completed within 30 days;
- Requires more frequent visits by caseworkers to children placed outside the state with responsibility for the child (i.e., every 6 months rather than the current requirement of every 12 months).