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Normalcy Legislation

​The “normalcy” legislation is very straightforward: Foster parents have the same authority as any other parent in making decisions about the children and youth in their care. That means, among other things, the elimination of a lot of the bureaucratic layers approving various activities of youth in care.

The Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act of 2014 is a federal law designed to promote well-being and normalcy for youth in care. The Act directs state child welfare agencies, contracted providers and courts to facilitate age-appropriate experiences for youth in care and take other steps to support normalcy and promote permanency.

In 2016 the Illinois General Assembly passed Public Act 99-839, which amended the Children and Family Services Act. The Act provides that each child who comes into the care and custody of the Department of Children and Family Services is fully entitled to participate in appropriate extracurricular, enrichment, cultural and social activities in a manner that allows that child to participate in his or her community to the fullest extent possible. It requires caregivers to use the reasonable and prudent parent standard in determining whether to give permission for a child in out-of-home-care to participate in appropriate extracurricular, enrichment, cultural and social activities.