The Field Center for Children's Practice, Policy and Research released data from a new study done this past year on the effect the Covid-19 pandemic is having on youth in the foster care system.
55% of foster youth reported that they were food insecure as a result of COVID-19
43% experienced a negative impact on their living situation— including being forced to leave, fearing being forced to leave, or experiencing homelessness or housing instability
72% reported a money situation that would be stable for no more than one month
48% indicated a negative impact on their employment— such as being laid off, no longer having reliable gig work, or having their work hours/income severely cut
56% of those surveyed reported clinically significant levels of depression or anxiety
52% reported COVID-19 having a negative impact on their health/mental health care
For those in foster care, 14% reported that their caseworker has not done a good job
communicating with them during the crisis
59% reported having reliable access to a computer during the crisis
What can we do?
Stay in contact with foster youth/ youth who have recently transitioned out of foster care. Provide emotional support and reliable information.
Provide eligible youth with access to housing and foster care services. Including a moratorium on discharging foster youth, suspending requirements for extended care, and expediting processes for youth to re-enter care.
Offer concrete services like a bag of groceries, gift cards, Wifi hotspots or technology needed.