On Feb. 9, 2018, President Donald Trump signed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (H.R. 1892) into law, which included the Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA; Public Law 115-123). This Act dramatically changed the way Title IV-E funds can be spent by states and points the nation toward robust prevention strategies. Multiple reforms within the legislation provide a novel opportunity for child welfare to transform into a system of well-being for children and families. This legislation, paired with our mission and vision, uniquely poises the State for systemic transformation.
Family First authorizes states, territories, and tribes with an approved Title IV-E prevention plan to provide time-limited prevention and treatment services for mental health, substance use prevention and treatment, and for in-home parent skill-based programs. Services may be provided to children who are identified as “candidates” for foster care and their parents or kin caregivers. It is through the provision of these empirically sound interventions and services that states may strengthen families, reduce the number of children entering out-of-home placements, and prevent the trauma associated with separating children from their family and natural supports.
SCDSS has elected to implement the optional Title IV-E Prevention Program authorized by Family First. We believe that by seizing this opportunity, the Department and our South Carolina partners will be able to leverage available resources to better achieve our mission and strategic vision of transforming to a system of well-being for the children and families of South Carolina.
Follow this link to learn more about the Department's implementation of the Family First Prevention Services Act of 2018.