“A Better Future for Youth” to be Charted at Summit
Rep. Jim McDermott to address experts at invitation-only forum
When foster care youth reach the age of 18, too often their safety net falls out from under them. They may be left without a family, without a place to sleep at night, without a high school diploma and without access to health care. The Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act, signed in October 2008, for the first time provides federal resources to help states support transitioning foster youth beyond age 18.
To help develop a blueprint of recommendations for state and national leaders to better serve this vulnerable young adult population, the American Bar Association Commission on Youth at Risk, Hofstra University School of Law and the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College, along with an array of other national planning organizations, are sponsoring an invitation-only summit on transitioning youth. The day-long series of programming for the national summit, to be held April 16 at Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College, New York, will bring more than 100 leaders and experts together for a dialogue on effective implementation of the new law and best practices to address the needs of the transitioning foster youth.
Keynote speakers will include Rep. Jim McDermott, original co-sponsor of the fostering connections legislation; Carmen R. Nazario, assistant secretary for Children and Families, Department of Health and Human Services; and Judith Kaye, chief judge (ret.) of the state of New York. ABA President Carolyn B. Lamm will present remarks at the summit’s kick-off reception on April 15. Summit participants will include youth and alumni from foster care, along with national leaders from the judicial, child welfare and advocacy community, juvenile justice, education and health, including mental health, professions.