LAWYERS FOR CHILDREN AMERICA NEWS BRIEF
November 2017 Edition
Welcome to Lawyers for Children America’s (LFCA) new monthly News Brief, in which we will be highlighting our accomplishments and informing our pro bono attorneys about LFCA. We hope you find our reporting interesting, and we welcome any suggestions for improvement.
At the beginning of August, 2017, LFCA hired a new program director, Debra Cohen. Debra will be in charge of case assignments to the pro bono attorneys and will be available to you for case consultation throughout the lifetime of your case. The contact information for Debra is as follows:
LFCA LAUNCHES NEW PROJECT
In 2016 and 2017, LFCA launched a new project, Legal Representation for Foster Children Aging-Out of the Foster Care System. After years of representing children who are victims of abuse and neglect, the LFCA staff became increasingly aware of a huge gap in services for youth aging out of foster care.
Large percentages of foster children, who have “aged-out” of the system at 18 years old, are unemployed and lack the necessary skills to secure employment. Many become homeless, turn to drugs, and some turn to prostitution. Pregnancy rates among girls are high, with these soon-to-be mothers unable to care for themselves or a baby. Without parenting skills, the likelihood of abuse and neglect effecting another generation is high. In addition, some of these “adults” turn to criminal behavior. The most compelling data has been collected in a national study by the U.S. Urban Institute and includes the following, concerning statistic:
Former foster youth no longer receiving services are 80% more likely than their peers to face issues such as unemployment, homelessness, unwanted pregnancies, depression, anxiety, dysfunctional social behavior, and even criminal activity.