Governor Lee signs Forever Homes Act into law
On Monday, the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services marked the legislative passage of Governor Bill Lee’s Forever Homes Act surrounded by adoptive and foster parents and community partners.
“We have an obligation to ensure that Tennessee children have a loving, permanent home, and the Forever Homes Act is an additional step that will provide critical support to foster and adoptive families and accelerate child placement,” said Governor Bill Lee. “I commend Commissioner Margie Quin and the General Assembly for partnering to serve Tennessee children and families.”
The Forever Homes Act will provide support to foster and adoptive families and accelerate child placement, namely allowing for a judicial waiver to speed adoption finalization from six to three months if a court sees fit, providing foster parents with a respite period of up to six months without losing their standing as a foster home, and extending care services for expectant mothers.
“As an adoptive parent, these supports for Tennessee families would have been music to my ears,” said DCS Commissioner Margie Quin. “I appreciate Governor Lee’s leadership to steward key budget and legislative priorities to serve Tennessee’s vulnerable children and benefit foster and adoptive families.”
DCS offers an incentive to families who adopt children from foster care by providing finical assistance for childcare through the age of 12. This assistance includes current and recent adoptions. Families can learn more about the program and fill out an application by visiting: www.tn.gov/dcs/child-care-assistance-program
The legislation passed with bipartisan support and was sponsored by Senator Ferrell Haile (R-Gallatin) and Representative Iris Rudder (R-Winchester).