The 86th Regular Texas Legislative Session begins on Jan. 8, 2019, and Texas CASA is hard at work preparing to advocate for our most vulnerable children at the Capitol. In June 2018, the Texas CASA Board of Directors approved Texas CASA’s Legislative Priorities for the 86th Legislature. Created based on input from the network of local CASA programs, the legislative priorities address a variety of topics, including:
- funding for CASA, Collaborative Family Engagement and DFPS;
- improving services and supports for older and aging-out youth;
- supporting efforts to better serve children and families dealing with substance use and abuse or mental health issues;
- improving educational outcomes;
- promoting trauma-informed care; and much more.
Download the Legislative Priorities for the 86th Legislature, or read them below.
Texas CASA Bill Tracker
Check out information regarding bills that Texas CASA is championing throughout the legislative session, bills that we consider a high priority for the child protection system, and other bills we support.
Texas CASA Legislative Priorities for the 86th Legislature
Texas CASA Funding Items
- Request an increase in annual legislative funding under HHSC by $2.25 million, in addition to the current annual funding level of $13.2 million, to $15.445 million.
- Support continued legislative funding for Family Finding/Collaborative Family Engagement under DFPS at $643,600 for the 2020-2021 fiscal biennium.
Texas CASA Legislative Policy Positions for 2019 Legislative Session
- Support policies and funding to improve foster care placement decisions to reduce disruptions and increase placement proximity to children’s families and home communities.
- Support needed state funding for DFPS priorities and adequate foster care and kinship provider rates.
- Improve services and supports for older and transitioning foster youth.
- Promote systematic understanding of trauma and use of trauma-informed care throughout all stages and roles in the child protection system.
- Support efforts to develop better services and supports for children, parents and families dealing with substance use and abuse or mental health issues.
- Support policies that improve educational outcomes for children and youth in state care.
- Support efforts to use data and predictive analytics to improve DFPS decision making.
- Improve policies protecting child and youth property and possessions during placement changes.
- Integrate and respect child, youth and family voice in all aspects of child protection policy and practice.
- Support broad stakeholder involvement in planning for and implementing the federal Family First Prevention Services Act.
- Help prevent human trafficking and meet the needs of trafficking victims by supporting needed resources and policy change.
- Support adequate state funding to enable successful expansion of Community-Based Care.
If you have any questions about the Legislative Priorities for the 86th Legislature, contact the Public Policy team at firstname.lastname@example.org.