Legislation introduced by a San Francisco state senator today would give pregnant teens and young parents in the foster care system assistance with parenting and child care.
State Sen. Leland Yee said the bill, SB 528, would give foster youth who are parents priority access to the same subsidized child care available to foster parents.
In addition, it would expand statewide a successful Los Angeles program providing foster youth with children with individual conferences with experts who can explain the resources available to them and help create a plan for raising the child, Yee said.
In addition, the bill clarifies who is responsible for providing age-appropriate sex education to foster youth, and requires the Department of Social Services to collect data on the number of foster youth who are also parents, Yee said.
Among foster youth who have been pregnant, around 30 percent will experience a second pregnancy while in foster care, Yee said.
“Parenting and pregnant youth are 200 percent more likely to drop out of high school than to graduate, leaving them without the means to achieve economic stability,” Yee said. “It is imperative that we provide basic resources and assistance for pregnant and parenting teens who are in foster care.”
Yee also introduced two other bills related to foster care earlier this week. SB 342 requires social workers to provide monthly in-home visits to foster youth, and SB 343 requires that foster youth 16 and older be provided with copies of critical documents such as their social security card and birth certificate.