Representative Cindi Duchow

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Madison, WI – Representative Cindi Duchow (R-Delafield) was proud to vote in favor of the foster care legislative package, which easily passed out of the Assembly with bipartisan support. If signed into law, the legislation will help the children and families in the foster care system. The 13 bills known as “Foster Forward” were the result of the work from the Speaker’s Task Force on Foster Care that held six hearings around the state.

“The ability to be successful in life should not be limited simply because a child is unfortunately put into the foster care system,” said Rep. Duchow. “I voted in favor of the Foster Forward legislation in order to help these children reach their full potential; they deserve the same opportunities as any other child.”

The bipartisan proposals make improvements to the child welfare system by increasing support for child welfare agencies, caseworkers and foster parents. Also within the legislation are additional services to foster children not only while they are in the system, but also support for when they age out of it. In addition, the package places a priority on prevention in order to keep children from entering the child welfare system in the first place.

According to the Department of Children and Families, in 2016 there were 7,482 children in the out-of-home placement program, according to the Department of Children and Families. Placements have risen nearly 20 percent over the past six years.

“We are responding and we are taking action to help a growing need in our state,” said Rep. Duchow. “These bi-partisan bills will have an impact on all those involved including support to families, improvements to the child welfare system and additional resources for foster children. I look forward to seeing these bills become a reality.”

The package of bills still need to be considered by the state Senate and signed into law by the governor.

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