Federal policymakers want to hear from the millions of relatives caring for the children of family members about how government can be a helpful partner to them.
Relative caregivers of children who would otherwise often be in the foster care system are being asked to share their experiences with federal policymakers.
The Administration on Community Living is requesting input from relative caregivers, along with child welfare professionals and kinship care advocates. The responses are being used to inform the work of the Federal Advisory Council to Support Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, which was created after the passage of the Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act in 2018. The first Advisory Council meeting took place last August and now the council is looking for input to help identify:
- Best practices, resources and other useful information for grandparents and other older relatives raising children
- Gaps in available resources
- Unique needs of children affected by opioid misuse
- Unique needs of members of Native American tribes.
The information collected will be included in a report to Congress and will help the Advisory Council plan future activities.
Generations United, a leading nonprofit organization focused on supporting relative caregivers, has created a guide for submitting comments that details suggested length, information to include and suggested topic areas to focus on.
“It’s a unique opportunity to have a direct voice,” said Jaia Lent, deputy executive director of Generations United and co-chair of the Advisory Council. “The goal is to create a report to Congress to educate them on what’s available and what gaps there may be in resources for grandfamilies.”
Responses are being collected until 11:59 p.m. EST on Friday, Feb. 7.