McDermott, Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth to Host Foster Youth Listening Tour in Seattle

May 24, 2013

SEATTLE, WA – Next week, Congressman Jim McDermott (D-WA) and the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth, in cooperation with Casey Family Programs, will host a two-day listening tour to discuss the foster care and child welfare systems in Washington. The bipartisan coalition of congressional representatives will visit foster care organizations, speak with specialists, and host a forum at the University of Washington with welfare administration officials.

The Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth, co-founded by McDermott, works to protect and promote the welfare of foster children and launched the national Foster Youth Listening Tour in 2012.

“All children deserve equal access to basic services and a fair chance to succeed, regardless of their backgrounds,” said McDermott. “This ongoing tour will help us identify the areas we need to improve, locally and nationally. The wellbeing of foster youth is not a partisan issue, and helping them become thriving members of society benefits our entire community.”

The event will be led by the Seattle based Casey Family Programs, the nation's largest operating foundation focused on safely reducing the need for foster care and improving the child welfare system.

“The work of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth is imperative to improving the lives of vulnerable children and families in our community and across the country,” said Dr. William C. Bell, president and CEO of Casey Family Programs. “We hope that this event will shed light on the need to safely reduce the number of children in foster care and some of the ways we can make it happen.”

Representatives Karen Bass (D-CA) and Dave Reichert (R-WA) will also be in attendance. Seattle is the first stop in the 2013 Listening Tour, and the only tour event scheduled for National Foster Care Month. Later this year, they will travel to Texas and New York.