“Community programs have already faced cuts in the past, reducing respite and legal support services. Current needs are for material support (food, diapers, clothes, beds, school supplies etc), respite (during school breaks, summer, and ongoing for younger children), volunteers to provide transportation, assistance with finding affordable housing and subsidized legal support," continued Portanova.
Less than 26,000 children are currently in state foster care. The added cost of just 125 of these children leaving kinship care and entering the formal system would be close to full funding for the 21 regional kinship programs. More children leaving kinship care would add more children to the foster care system, driving the cost to the state even higher.
“Grandparents and relatives who care for children are a national resource,” stated Gerard Wallace, Esq., Director of the NYS Kinship Navigator, and national expert on Kincare. “Without them, tens of thousands of children would be in foster care. It's our nation’s family value and it's our tradition, and support for these caregivers means better outcomes for kids.”
Watch a news clip from our press conference and join AARP members across the state in fighting to save New York State’s Kinship Programs from Budget Cuts. Call 1-800-327-1198 and ask your state legislator to save Kincare programs in New York State.