Foster Care: a Social Injustice

The United States foster care system is classified as a social injustice in the following ways: * Once a child in foster care turns 18, they age out of the system. This means that they no longer receive help from Child Protective Services. (COPS) * Children in foster care are often treated unfairly because of their background and health problems. Many children end up in shelters or foster homes that don’t take care of them.

Biological parents of foster children cause many problems for their children. Severe emotional, behavioral, and developmental issues affect around 30% of these children. Such problems are another reason why people treat foster children differently. Children are placed in foster care after they are removed from their homes. They are removed for numerous reasons such as abuse, neglect, drug/alcohol abuse, or any other reason COPS finds to take a child. There are about 10,000 currently in foster are Just in Arizona alone. The case load has exceeded its limit by 62%. There aren’t enough homes to house all of these children. To help this social injustice, families volunteer to become certified foster families to foster children. The process is very long and takes time before they are allowed to foster. Organizations such as Case De Los Onions, the Blake Foundation, and Children’s Advocacy Center work with COPS to help foster families take care of the children.

Law enforcement, daycare, the Juvenile Court Center, transportation/supervision companies, and the Foster Care Review Board are also very involved in the foster care system. Based on the history of this failing system, I believe we study history to learn from our mistakes. With more knowledge, we should be able to better help the parents and keep their children from abuse, neglect, and death. In Arizona, 23 children were killed by their parents in 2010. Hopefully in the future we can have no child die while in foster care.

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