Brief State Policies for Assessing and Supporting Kinship Foster Parents
Jacob Leos-Urbel, Roseana Bess, Rob Geen
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This study provides updated information regarding states' kinship care policies. Almost all states give preference to and seek out kin when placing a child in foster care. However, states vary in the way that they assess and support kinship care. Most states assess kin differently than non-kin foster parents. Some kin receive foster care payments while others are supported with lesser payments. This paper analyzes the impacts of the Adoption and Safe Families Act final rule on kinship care and discusses the challenge of creating kinship care policies that both ensure child safety and address the unique needs of kin.


Assessing the New Federalism is a multiyear Urban Institute project designed to analyze the devolution of responsibility for social programs from the federal government to the states, focusing primarily on health care, income security, employment and training programs, and social services. Alan Weil is the project director. Researchers monitor program changes and fiscal developments. In collaboration with Child Trends, the project studies changes in family well-being. The project aims to provide timely, nonpartisan information to inform public debate and to help state and local decisionmakers carry out their new responsibilities more effectively. Key components of the project include a household survey, studies of policies in 13 states, and a database with information on all states and the District of Columbia, available at the Urban Institute's Web site: http://www.urban.org. This paper is one in a series of discussion papers analyzing information from these and other sources. The project has received funding from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the McKnight Foundation, the Commonwealth Fund, the Stuart Foundation, the Weingart Foundation, the Fund for New Jersey, the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, and the Rockerfeller Foundation. The nonpartisan Urban Institute publishes studies, reports, and books on timely topics worthy of public consideration. The views expressed are those of the authors and should not be attributed to the Urban Institute, its trustees, or its funders.

Research Areas Social safety net Children and youth
Tags State programs, budgets Child welfare