Assemblymember Eric Linder’s Bill to Provide Opportunities to Foster Youth Receives Unanimous Support
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Matt Roman (916) 319-2060SACRAMENTO – Today, AB 1984 by Assembly member Eric Linder (R-Corona) unanimously passed the Assembly Human Services Committee. The bill establishes the California Foster Youth Enrichment Grant Program to ensure that foster youth have the necessary resources to participate in the same enrichment and extracurricular activities that are available to their peers and are critical to healthy development and school success.
“Unfortunately, participation in extracurricular enrichment activities is a rare opportunity for foster youth,” said Assemblymember Linder. “Cost should never be a barrier for foster youth who are looking for activities to better themselves.”
On average, students in foster care lag far behind their classmates. Less than half graduate from high school and only 3-5% graduate from four-year colleges. Additionally, foster youth are disproportionately subjected to suspension, expulsion, and contacts with the juvenile justice system.
AB 1984 acts on the growing body of research that demonstrates the positive impact that extracurricular activities such as sports participation, and art and music lessons can play in a young person’s academic performance and overall well-being.
“California law promotes involvement in extracurricular enrichment activities for youth in foster care, but doesn’t provide the necessary funding. My bill will put our money where our mouth is,” said Assemblymember Linder.
AB 1984 is supported by California Youth Connection, Youth Law Center, Advokids, California Alliance of Child and Family Services, Families Now, John Burton Foundation, and the National Center for Youth Law.
(This bill is in the appropriations committee now, pending status)
Assemblymember Eric Linder, R-Corona, represents the 60th Assembly District in the California Legislature, which includes the communities of Corona, Eastvale, Jurupa Valley, Norco, & Riverside