Push New York State to Pause Aging Out of Foster Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic
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The COVID-19 pandemic and its economic, social, and physical repercussions are far from being over. One of the most vulnerable populations is current foster youth who are preparing to age out of the system. We are asking Governor Cuomo to impose a 180-day moratorium on foster care in New York State to allow youth turning 21 during this pandemic to remain in care to ensure their safety and wellbeing. Alaska, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio and Rhode Island, and governments of the District of Columbia have all imposed moratoriums to essentially "pause" the aging out process for 18-21-year-olds in the midst of this pandemic, so they can receive vital and necessary aid, income, and support services.
Aging out of the system is already a huge and often frightening transition, where most youth's income and support networks within social services become severed. Nationwide polling shows that this pandemic has been negatively affecting current and former foster youth at an alarming rate on all economic fronts, including but not limited to:
- Nearly 65% of “transition-age” (18-24) foster care youth lost their jobs because of the pandemic.
- 39.6% said they were forced to move or fear they will be forced to leave their current housing situation.
- 27.6% described their home as having a food crisis or being very low on food.
While foster youth experience these challenges nearly every day, the pandemic has only amplified and worsened these instabilities for youth in New York State, especially considering that NYC is at the epicenter of this pandemic. Thank you for signing and helping youth in need!!
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