As we work to improve our child welfare system through legislative reform, let’s ensure that the children at the center of our child welfare cases are seen, heard and represented. Let’s guarantee them the right to legal counsel…. Read more of Attorney and NACC State Coordinator Chelsea Peters’ op-ed in the Lewiston Sun Journal.
Child Advocates’ program provides model for direct representation in Indiana
Attorney and advocate Rachel Roman-Lagunas featured in Indiana Lawyer article about Counsel for Kids efforts in Indiana.
Senate Bill 180 reignites conversation about direct representation for CHINS, TPR proceedings
Senate Bill 180 reignites conversation about direct representation for CHINS, TPR proceedings. Read more in the Indiana Lawyer.
NACC & Partners Deliver Sign-on Letter Showing Broad Support for Legal Counsel
The National Association of Counsel for Children and partners recently delivered a letter to Congress endorsing access to legal counsel for children and parents in child welfare proceedings through Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) reauthorization. Signed by over 750 individuals and organizations, the letter encompasses widespread support from nearly every corner of the child welfare field, including […]
Counsel for Kids Rings in 2022 with Legislative Action in 3 States
The Counsel for Kids campaign rang in the New Year with the melody of multi-state legislative action to advance children’s right to counsel. Three states have made children’s legal representation a priority area for policy development. In Florida, Senator Lauren Book sponsored SB 948 in a renewed effort to establish a Statewide Office of Child Representation and guarantee counsel for children in licensed foster care homes. […]
‘It’s important for kids to have a voice’: FL lawmakers propose mandatory lawyer for foster children
When it comes to court, it’s every foster child for themselves in some Florida counties. Florida is one of 14 states that does not guarantee a foster child will get a lawyer during court proceedings, according to the National Association of Counsel for Children. “A lot of these kids — they’ve been abused and neglected,” […]
Children in foster care don’t always get an attorney in Indiana. That could change.
A bill before Indiana lawmakers could require juvenile judges to appoint attorneys for children in the foster care system. Senate Bill 180 would require a judge to appoint an attorney to represent cases involving children in need of services (CHINS) and termination of parental rights (TPR). Currently, a judge can choose whether to appoint an attorney to represent a […]
Indiana lawmakers consider bill to appoint all children experiencing foster care an attorney
The Indiana Senate is considering a bill that would provide counsel for youth experiencing foster care in Indiana. SB 180 advanced unanimously through the Family and Children Services Committee and now moves to the Appropriations Committee. “Children really need a team, and a complete team, that ensures that their legal rights are protected,” said Joshua […]
Florida Senator Lauren Book’s child welfare bill advances in committee
Florida children in certain kinds of proceedings would automatically be appointed an attorney under this legislation. Sen. Lauren Book’s bill that would guarantee an attorney is appointed for children in the state’s care advanced in committee Tuesday — but not before the bill drew heartbreaking testimony both for and against. The Senate Democratic Leader’s legislation (SB 948) […]
The Road from Attorney Panel to State-Run Program
Wyoming’s GAL Program History By Stacey Obrecht, JD, CWLS, and Joe Belcher, JD This article was originally published in the Winter 2021 issue of The Guardian.