• May 2010
  • Vol. 11, No. 4

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Questions About Advocating for Pregnant and Parenting Teens in Foster Care

Pregnant and parenting teens in foster care face multiple challenges. Findings from a 2009 study by Chapin Hall of more than 4,500 pregnant and parenting Illinois teens in foster care identified several concerns: late or no prenatal care, investigations for child maltreatment and children placed in foster care, lack of education, and mothers having two or more children.

According to Advocacy for Pregnant and Parenting Teens in Foster Care, a factsheet from the Healthy Teen Network and the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law, practitioners can help address such challenges when they understand the legal rights of these youth. The factsheet answers common questions posed by practitioners on topics such as:

  • The rights of youth who become parents while they are minors
  • Whether children born to youth in foster care should be placed in foster care because their parent is in foster care
  • Foster parents' eligibility to receive maintenance payments under Federal law if their foster child retains custody or his or her child
  • The expenses covered by maintenance payments made on behalf of the infant
  • How to better serve youth in foster care who are pregnant or parenting

Advocacy for Pregnant and Parenting Teens in Foster Care is available on the Healthy Teen Network website:

www.healthyteennetwork.org/vertical/Sites/%7BB4D0CC76-CF78-4784-BA7C-5D0436F6040C%7D/uploads/%7BA1D4E6CF-9E51-4AF9-B2E0-B0BF06DEF04B%7D.PDF (199 KB)

Related Items

The Healthy Teen Network is a national organization focused on adolescent health and well-being with an emphasis on teen pregnancy prevention, teen pregnancy, and teen parenting. The Healthy Teen Network’s new Evidence-Based Resource Center supports organizations looking to implement evidence-based or innovative approaches to reduce teen pregnancy by providing training in evidence-based programs for trainers and facilitators; technical assistance on program selection, implementation, evaluation, and more; and resources for all aspects of evidence-based programs and promising programs.


The Chapin Hall study, Pregnant and Parenting Foster Youth: Their Needs, Their Experiences, by Amy Dworsky and Jan DeCoursey, is available online:

www.chapinhall.org/sites/default/files/Pregnant_Foster_Youth_final_081109.pdf (1.4 MB)

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