The first priority of Child and Family Services is to maintain children at home with their family, if they can safely do so. If a child cannot safely remain at home, the next best option is placement in a family setting with a kinship caregiver or foster family.
Who Can Be a Kinship Caregiver?
Kinship caregivers are preferred placements for children due to their knowledge of and relationship with the family and the child. Placement preference is determined by the following specific order, and subject to the child's best interest:
- Non-custodial parents
- Relatives: The child's grandparents, great-grandparents, aunt, great-aunt, uncle, great-uncle, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, stepparent, first cousin, step sibling, sibling, parent's first cousins, and adults who are the adoptive parents of the child's sibling. For an Indian child, relative also includes an "extended family member" as defined by the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA).
- Friends: If relatives are not available, an adult identified by the parent or the child who the child knows and is comfortable with may be considered. Friends must be willing to become licensed foster parents for the specific child.
Where Can I Learn More?
If you have questions concerning a child or children that are involved with Child and Family Services, please contact us through our
client concerns/constituent services here.