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How our legislative & public policy leadership is inspiring positive change in the child welfare system. Below you will find all of the latest Capitol Beat stories – to browse other categories, return to The CASA Voice home page or use the navigation list in the right column.

Be sure to keep informed of the latest state and national child welfare news coverage on the News Clips of Interest page!

Legislative Efforts to Speed Up CPS Investigations, Increase Caseworker Salaries

State and legislative leaders have continued to express alarm about problems within the CPS system and have directed DFPS to provide a plan to deal with these urgent issues. After critical news reports in early October that CPS had failed to investigate abuse and neglect allegations within legally required time frames, state leaders requested that… Read more »

Texas CASA Welcomes Legislative Advocacy Coordinator

Texas CASA is excited to announce that Jennifer Limas-Mota has joined our team as the Legislative Advocacy Coordinator. She will be working half time with the Public Policy team to help maintain and build our Legislative Advocacy Team (LAT) network, lead our efforts for the 2017 CASA Day at the Capitol (coming up on Feb…. Read more »

CASA Programs Busy Meeting with Legislators to Prepare for 85th Session

Many CASA programs like CASA of the Pines and CASA of El Paso are already meeting with legislators to discuss Texas CASA’s legislative priorities. Legislative Advocacy Team (LAT) members from CASA of the Pines in Houston and Polk Counties recently met with Representatives Trent Ashby and James White to discuss Texas CASA’s 85th Legislative Session… Read more »

CPS Under Fire after Texas Senate Finance Committee Hearing

The Texas Senate Finance Committee met on the afternoon of Oct. 26 to examine problems with Child Protective Services (CPS) and a proposal to help deal with these issues. These problems include failure to see children who may have been abused or neglected within legally required time frames, and CPS staff turnover. Among other things,… Read more »

Survey on the Education of Students in Foster Care

Over the past six years, the Supreme Court of Texas Children’s Commission has collaborated with stakeholders throughout the state to develop and implement a statewide plan to improve education outcomes for children and youth in foster care entitled the Texas Blueprint. Although there are now many comprehensive federal and state laws in place to address… Read more »

Webinar: Understanding & Addressing Child Sexual Aggression

The Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) has been working with Texas CASA and the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Texas to develop new guidelines regarding sexually aggressive behavior among children and youth in the Texas foster care system. Those new guidelines are rolling out statewide on Dec. 1, and it is important for CASA volunteers and… Read more »

State Leaders Continue to Express Concerns about CPS Problems; Commissioner Whitman Responds

After recent media reports about serious problems at CPS regarding locating and investigating reports of child abuse and neglect within legally required timelines, Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Joe Straus jointly issued this letter to DFPS Commissioner Hank Whitman detailing their concerns and requesting a plan to address the problems. In addition, the… Read more »

New Online Trauma-Informed Advocacy Training Available

Texas CASA is excited to share a new online training resource, Trauma-Informed Advocacy for Children and Youth in Foster Care, featuring Elizabeth Watkins, J.D., Regional Attorney for the Department of Family and Protective Services. Following the Trauma-Informed Care survey and report issued last year, Texas CASA, the Texas Children’s Commission and the Shield Ayers Foundation partnered… Read more »