Family First Prevention Services Act Sets To Improve Outcomes for Vulnerable Children

On February 9, 2018, President Trump signed into law the landmark bipartisan Family First Prevention Services Act (Family First) as part of Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018.

Family First redirects federal funds to provide services to keep children safe with their families and out of foster care. It also helps ensure children are placed in the least restrictive, most family-like setting appropriate to their special needs when foster care is necessary.

Some Family First highlights: 

  • federal investments in prevention for children at risk of foster care; 
  • federal funds targeted for children in foster family homes, or in qualified residential treatment programs or other settings; 
  • supports youth transitioning from care; 
  • promotes permanent families for children; 
  • help address opioids and other substance abuse; and 
  • additional investments to keep children safely with families.

Included in Family First is also a provision from the bipartisan Child Welfare Oversight and Accountability Act, requiring States to compile an annual child maltreatment death data and provide information on what States are doing to develop and implement statewide multidisciplinary fatality prevention plans.

Family First Prevention Services Act Resources (from Children’s Defense Fund)

Learn more about the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018