Holes punched in walls. Car headlights smashed. Windows broken. Weapons, threats, sexual comments. Children who cant live with other children. Children whom foster parents wont take in. Children who arent able to get the mental health care they desperately need.
Kansas foster care contractors and parents say all of these situations have become more common and more risky since 2017, when the state made sweeping changes to the juvenile justice system. The changes, they say, removed options for dealing with foster children who have high needs and violent behaviors.
KVC Kansas and St. Francis Ministries which recruit foster parents, facilitate adoptions and provide mental health treatment for the state say this influx of older children with mental illnesses and behavioral issues has strained their resources even further.