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Introduced Version House Bill 2432 History

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H. B. 2432

 

         (By Delegates Cowles, Stowers, J. Miller,

             C. Miller, Phillips, Lawrence, Mahan,

                       Hatfield and Hall)

 

         [Introduced January 11, 2012

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; referred to the

         Committee on the Judiciary.]

 

A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated §49-2-12a, relating to establishing a bill of rights for children in foster care.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:

    That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new section, designated §49-2-12a, to read as follows:

ARTICLE 2. STATE RESPONSIBILITIES FOR THE PROTECTION AND CARE OF CHILDREN.

§49-2-12a. Foster child’s bill of rights.

    (a) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to be cherished by a family of his or her own, either his or her family helped by readily available services and support to resume his or her care, or an adoptive family or, by plan, a continuing foster family.

    (b) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to be nurtured by foster parents who have been selected to meet his or her individual needs, and who are provided services and support, including specialized education, so that the child can grow in its ability to enable the child to reach his or her potentiality.

    (c) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to receive sensitive, continuing help in understanding and accepting the reasons for the child’s own family's inability to take care of him or her, and in developing confidence in his or her own self worth.

    (d) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to receive continuing loving care and respect as a unique human being.

    (e) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to be a child growing in trust in himself, herself and others.

    (f) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to grow up in freedom and dignity in a neighborhood of people who accept him or her with understanding, respect and friendship.

    (g) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to receive help in overcoming deprivation or whatever distortion in his or her emotional, physical, intellectual, social and spiritual growth may have resulted from his or her early experiences.

    (h) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to receive education, training and career guidance to prepare for a useful and satisfying life.

    (i) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to receive preparation for citizenship and parenthood through interaction with foster parents and other adults who are consistent role models.

    (j) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to be represented by an attorney-at-law in administrative or judicial proceedings with access to fair hearings and court review of decisions, so that his or her best interests are safeguarded.

    (k) Every child in foster care has the inherent right to receive a high quality of child welfare services, including involvement of the natural parents, where appropriate, and his or her own involvement in major decisions that affect his or her life.




    NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to establish a bill of rights for children in foster care.


    §49-2-12a is new; therefore it has been completely underscored.

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