Wed March 23, 2011

Bill Aims to Protect Foster Youth from Identity Theft

A bill that seeks to help protect foster youth and make it easier for them to transition out of foster care is making its way to Governor John Hickenlooper. 

Approximately half of kids in foster care end up dropping out of school or going to prison.  There are many factors that may contribute to that; among them, restrictions that don’t easily allow foster youth to participate certain extracurricular activities.  Senate Bill 120 would remove those obstacles in an effort to improve their high school experience.  The bill would also protect foster youth against identity theft.

“When they are 16 to 18 years of age in foster care, the courts would provide them and their guardian with a credit check and if it’s determined that there are some problems and it’s due to identity theft there’s ways to try to help them so that when the emancipate out, they are dealing with a clean credit report,” says the bill’s House sponsor, Democratic Representative John Kefalas.

Kefalas says identity theft in the foster care system is a growing problem.  The bill passed a final reading in the House Wednesday and now heads back to the Senate for consideration of changes.


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