Federal Family First Act Could Help Vulnerable Texas Kids – But Only If the State Quits Dragging Its Feet

The fine-print details were all but drowned out amid last month's partisan budget fight, obscured by the drama of a brief government shutdown. But buried in the budget Congress finally passed and the president signed into law, there's a groundbreaking shift in the way our nation treats its most vulnerable children. The Family First Prevention Services Act could have a profound impact on the lives of Texas kids living in abusive or unsafe homes. But for that impact to translate to real improvement, the state must address child welfare with a renewed sense of speed and urgency. Family First passed with bipartisan support and is welcomed by a wide spectrum of respected child advocacy organizations. In technical terms, it's a complicated maze of funding mechanisms and rules under which federal dollars are deployed to support individual states' child-welfare programs.   Continue reading...

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