California Family Resource Association
 
 

Action needed on FFPSA

After months of work, compromise, and negotiation, Senator Burr and several other Senate members have asked the House Rules Committee to strip an amended version of the Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA) from the CURES Act to prevent its passage in the House and Senate.

As you may know, the FFPSA contains important provisions which would allow federal Title IV-E foster care funds to be used more flexibly for prevention services, including substance use and mental health treatment services for families in or at risk of becoming involved with the foster care system.

Time is of the essence, as Congress adjourns next week. At this vital juncture, we encourage you to weigh in NOW with your members of Congress in support the passage of this bill.

It will take 10 minutes of your time and four steps:

  1. Call the Congressional switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask them to connect you directly with your Senator or House Representative (they can only connect you to one office at a time).
  2. When you get the Congressional Member's front desk tell them your name, your affiliation, and where you are from.
  3. Ask them to: please urge Senator/Representative X to do everything possible to support the passage of the Family First Prevention Services Act (HR 5456, S 3065) in this legislative session. This bill is a critical step in providing children and families with vital substance prevention and treatment services they need.
  4. Thank them for sharing your request with their Member and then call the switchboard again to share the same message with your other Senator and representative from your District until you have contacted all three of your Congressional Members.



The Family First Prevention Services Act:

  1. Allows states to use federal foster care dollars to pay for prevention services
  2. Provides funding to state and regional grantees of evidence-based services that prevent child abuse and neglect related to substance abuse.
  3. Reauthorizes the Regional Partnership Grant program
  4. Extends PSSF, CWS, and Adoption and Legal Guardianship Incentive Payments for 5 more years

The Family First Prevention Services Act (HR 5456, S 3065) allows states to use federal foster care dollars to pay for prevention services. Biological families, adoptive families, and families in which a relative is caring for the child would all be eligible for services, if needed to keep the child safely at home. Prevention services include mental health services, substances abuse services, and in home parent skill based programs such as parent training, home visiting, individual and family therapy.

The bill also would help families stay together by, which provides funding to state and regional grantees seeking to provide evidence-based services to prevent child abuse and neglect related to substance abuse.

It also promotes best practices for states by providing model foster care licensing standards with a focus on placements with family members.

This bill also extends the Promoting Safe and Stable Families (PSSF) and Child Welfare Services (CWS) programs (each in title IV-B of the Social Security Act) as well as the Adoption and Legal Guardianship Incentive Payments (formerly called the Adoption Incentive Payments program), for five more years. They are set to expire at the end of the fiscal year.