Frank Mecca


Beyond Family First: Congress Should Boost Funding to Prevent Child Abuse and Neglect

Last week, national TV news was filled with images of newly elected Members of Congress descending on Capitol Hill for their “freshman orientation.” My hope is that this change – and momentum on the heels of a major federal foster care law signed earlier this year – will create a new opportunity to get child welfare financing closer to what advocates, practitioners and lawmakers have long said they want, but have failed to deliver: True child maltreatment prevention.


In California, Child Welfare Leaders Continue Heated Debate Over Federal Entitlement Reform

Less than a year after landmark federal legislation quietly transformed the child welfare field, tensions about the future of federal support for foster care emerged again in California. At a meeting of the state’s influential County Welfare Directors Association, Jerry Milner— one of the the nation’s top child welfare officials— laid out his vision for overhauling the country’s foster care system in the wake of the passage of the Family First Prevention Services Act.


Brown Signs Law to Ease Licensing Path for Relatives, Vetoes Foster Care Mobile Response Plan

As California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) prepares to leave office at the end of the year, the last round of child welfare legislation under his watch includes a new law to ease the path of relative caregivers under the Continuum of Care Reform (CCR), the major child welfare initiative developed during his time as governor.


California Approves Short-Term Fix For Foster Parents Stuck in the Approval Process

California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) signed a stop-gap measure on Tuesday that will provide emergency funding to caregivers who take in a foster child before completing the approval process. Over the past year, the state’s new approval process for caregivers in the state has led to lengthy funding delays for foster parents and relative caregivers, now collectively known as resource families.


Inside Game: The Key Players Behind Washington’s Biggest Foster Care Reform in Decades

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) was furious and heartbroken. Nearly three years into an effort to fundamentally overhaul the nation’s foster care system, the bill Wyden had crafted alongside Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) was dying.


Child Welfare Advocate Angie Schwartz Leads in Opposition to Family First Act

Last week, several prominent California child welfare experts expressed grave concerns about the Family First Prevention Services Act, ­pending federal legislation that would dramatically change how foster care is paid for.


    Foster Parents Met with Misinformation and Disorganization

    Thomas leans over his computer putting the final touches on 40 hours of paperwork that encapsulates weeks of thoughtful dialog with his partner, Brett.* Finally, they have completed their applications to become foster parents.



    Winners and Losers in Calif. Child Welfare Funding

    On Friday May 23, a handful of child welfare advocacy groups in California, aiming to carve out a share of the state’s $4.7 billion budget surplus, had cause to celebrate, while the proposals of others were left unheard.


    A Tale of Two Fridays

    It is Friday, May 4th, at the Richmond Courthouse. Sun spills into the trash-strewn courtyard as the immediate future of soon-to-be 19-year-old foster youth David C. is decided within. On Sunday, David will turn 19, throwing into question his eligibility for benefits provided through a celebrated California law that extends foster care to age 20.