Reader’s View: Child protection efforts need more fundingHousing & Homelessness
By Bruce Lesley
It’s alarming that the need for foster parents has outpaced local resources (“As demand increases, St. Louis County struggles to find homes for children in protective custody,” July 5). State licensing reforms may help, but reform in Washington also could accelerate progress by focusing on prevention.
Local officials cite substance and mental health needs as drivers of increased child maltreatment. But federal funding shortchanges prevention efforts that help parents manage these and other abuse and neglect risk factors. Today, the federal government pays $4 for foster care for every $1 for prevention. And federal foster care funding is insufficient, covering less than half of eligible kids. Continued underfunding of prevention will only drain this already shallow funding pool…