Mara Powell
502-895-8167 *122

Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates

We see a growing trend of good coming from Washington, D.C. and from Frankfort when it comes to improving outcomes of kids impacted by the child welfare system. House Bill 158, championed by Representative David Meade, is Kentucky’s first step to ensuring state law is aligned with the comprehensive federal legislation, the Family First Prevention Services Act.

Family First can be an accelerator to the already important work that is emanating from last year’s child welfare reforms and state budget investments. We commend Representative Meade and his colleagues for leveraging this opportunity to build on those significant strides to improve policy and practice, and for prioritizing keeping children safe and strengthening families. We are also encouraged to see the inclusion of a bill of rights for children in foster care as these kids deserve their voice heard in the process that impacts them and a chance at their brightest future. It’s rare to see federal legislation and state legislation converge to create what can be a profound difference for kids.

We applaud Representative Meade for his leadership on HB 158 and the House Health and family Services Committee for their unanimous support of this important legislation. Thank you to the Cabinet for Health and Family Services for their support of this legislation and work to improve the well-being of children in foster care.

Stay up-to-date on Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priorities and other bills that are good for kids on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.


About Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky Youth Advocates believes all children deserve to be safe, healthy, and secure. As THE independent voice for Kentucky’s children, we work to ensure policymakers create investments and policies that are good for children. Learn more at