HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Concordia University School of Law

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Keeping Families Together

The Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law reports on the re-introduction of its proposed legislation entitled, "Keeping Families Together" in Congress.   Re-introduced by one of its sponsors Susan Collins (R-Me), the legislation would aid states in encouraging agencies that serve children with mental health issues to work together to provide education, child welfare and juvenile justice.  Most importantly, the bill would increase the availability of home- and community-based services for these children to prevent them from having to be separated from their families in order to receive the care they require.  The legislation is in response to a 2003 Government Accountabilit Office report that found "at least 12,700 cases in fiscal year 2001 of children placed in child welfare and juvenile justice systems so they could access needed mental health services."   This sounds like good family values legislation so I wonder what held it up last year.   Hopefully it wasn't budget issues because those clearly haven't improved at either the state or federal level.  [bm]

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