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July 2017 Legislative Update Webinar Series – 85th Legislative Session

The Texas CASA Public Policy team hosted a series of three webinars in July covering the recently concluded 85th Regular Legislative Session, legislative outcomes and the specific impact of legislation on CASA programs and child advocacy.

The webinar series is now archived and available for replay on our CASA College Learning Management System (LMS) at the link below. In order to access them, you will need a CASA College LMS account. Create an account here if you have not done so already.


See below for a detailed description of each webinar.

An Overview & Update on Priorities for the 85th Legislative Session | Thursday, July 6, 2017
In this webinar, the Texas CASA Public Policy team provided participants with a general overview of what occurred this session, including information on the political and financial context of the session. The team gave an overview of what happened with each of the CASA funding and legislative priorities, as well as discussed a major change to funding for kinship caregivers and a bill that made the Department of Family and Protective Services a standalone agency.

Major Child Welfare Reform Bills Passed in the 85th Session | Tuesday, July 11, 2017
In this webinar, the Texas CASA Public Policy team and Tina Amberboy, Executive Director of the Supreme Court of Texas Children’s Commission, gave an overview of three major child welfare reform bills (SB 11, HB 7, HB 1549) that passed in the 85th Session, including a bill that moves case management responsibility for children in foster care to private contractors. Each of these bills changes the child welfare system in a profound way, and each one has implications on the work and role of CASA staff and volunteers across the state.

Child Welfare Bills Impacting Children & Youth in Foster Care | Thursday, July 13, 2017
Texas CASA was joined by advocates from One Voice Texas and Texans Care for Children to discuss some of the many important child welfare bills that passed during the 85th Legislative Session – covering everything from reforming the Preparation for Adult Living program, to creating a new ombudsman office for everyone impacted by child welfare, to religious conscience legislation.