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News stories tagged with "foster-care"

NY legislators want better foster care background

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York legislators have approved amending state law to require agencies placing children in foster care first check whether prospective parents have done it before and provided poor or questionable care.

Sponsors say caseworkers sometimes remove children from homes suspected of being unsafe without either revoking the parents' certificate to provide foster care or reporting them to the state's child abuse hotline.  Go to full article
Prospective foster parent Jared Carey works as the production coordinator for the Community Performance Series at SUNY Potsdam. He's also the business manager for the Orchestra of Northern New York. Photo: Zach Hirsch
Prospective foster parent Jared Carey works as the production coordinator for the Community Performance Series at SUNY Potsdam. He's also the business manager for the Orchestra of Northern New York. Photo: Zach Hirsch

What it takes to be a North Country foster parent

This week, we've been reporting stories on foster care in the North Country (find more stories here). A foster home is supposed to be a safe place for kids. And foster parents are the people who make that happen.

Not everyone is cut out to be a foster parent. Getting certified takes a lot of work. Foster parents have to get a background check, they have to take classes, and their house has to get inspected, to name just a few of the steps. In this last installment of our series, we go behind the scenes.  Go to full article
Case planner Matthew McAllister runs through an exercise with prospective foster parents. Photo: Zach Hirsch
Case planner Matthew McAllister runs through an exercise with prospective foster parents. Photo: Zach Hirsch

North Country fostering: "The need's not going anywhere"

Over the last few months, we've been researching foster care in the North Country (find more stories here). Yesterday, we met Dominique Tarkenton-Otto, who gave us the children's perspective. Now, we hear from the case workers who help those kids.

Zach Hirsch talks with Martha Foley about some lingering questions about his profile of Dominique, and the bigger picture.  Go to full article
Dominique Tarkenton and her foster mom, Tammy Otto, at Tammy's house earlier this month. Photo: Zach Hirsch
Dominique Tarkenton and her foster mom, Tammy Otto, at Tammy's house earlier this month. Photo: Zach Hirsch

"I call her Mom": a foster family in Macomb

Tens of thousands of kids end up in foster care each year in New York State. And a lot of the time, it's because they were abused or neglected at home. Foster care is supposed to be a short-term arrangement. Child Protective Services gets kids out, and a foster care agency gives them a safe place to stay. The idea is, they'll go home when things stabilize.

But it's not a simple process. When the caseworker first arrives to pick a child up, a moment they call the "removal," it can be terrifying. Many children put up a fight. But Dominique Tarkenton didn't resist. At 11, she knew it was time to go. "I decided I just wanted to leave, to get out. And not come back."  Go to full article
Photo: Children's Home of Jefferson County
Photo: Children's Home of Jefferson County

Preview: foster parenting information session in Canton

A Foster Parenting Information Night will be held this Thursday (6 pm) at the Human Service Center, second floor conference room, on Highway 310 in Canton. The event is sponsored by the Children's Home of Jefferson County. Todd Moe spoke with Victoria Peck, Director of the St. Lawrence County Foster Care Program.  Go to full article
Brittany LaBrake
Brittany LaBrake

Raise Your Voice: Living on Your Own Isn't Easy

For a lot of kids in high school, the opportunity to live in your own apartment is like a dream come true, a long awaited chance for independence and freedom. That's what Brittany LaBrake thought. Brittany was living in a foster home for five years. A month before her 18th birthday, while she was still in high school, she signed herself out of foster care to live on her own. Brittany moved into an apartment in Potsdam with her boyfriend, Gary. She wanted to live her life independently, bravely, like her hero, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, from TV. But it's not that easy. Here's Brittany's audio diary, a part of our series Raise Your Voice: Stories from North Country Teens.  Go to full article
Brittany Chase
Brittany Chase

Raise Your Voice: Foster Care Saves a Rebel

We begin a new project for North Country Public Radio. It's called Raise Your Voice: Stories from North Country Teens. We gave three young women recorders and asked them to document their daily lives. The resulting stories will air Monday mornings in June on The 8 O'Clock Hour. The project is a collaboration with North Country Adolescent Outreach, a peer education program based at SUNY Potsdam. Today we hear from Brittany Chase. Brittany is 16 years old. She lives in a foster home in Potsdam. Strife in her biological family landed her in the foster care system. Brittany says it saved her life.  Go to full article

Convicted Rapist Foster Father Inspires Albany Bill for FBI Checks

A man who has been a foster father in Jefferson county for four years was discovered to have a prior statuatory rape conviction in another state. The public outcry has led to a county investigation, and a proposed bill in Albany that would require federal background checks on all foster parents in New York.  Go to full article

Foster Care Program Seeks Help from Families

The Children's Home of Jefferson County is starting its own community-based foster care program and is looking for help from families in the North Country. Jody Tosti reports.  Go to full article

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