3B. A Guide for Case Managers:Assisting Foster Youth with Healthy Sexual Development & Pregnancy Prevention

Source: CDSS A Guide for Case Managers:Assisting Foster Youth with Healthy Sexual Development & Pregnancy Prevention, September 2017

In February of 2016, the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) along with stakeholders, formed the Healthy Sexual Development (HSD) Workgroup. This workgroup met to address concerns regarding youth and Non-Minor Dependents (NMD) in care and their reproductive health. Despite the passage of legislation addressing the reproductive health rights of foster youth, it was clear that there was more guidance needed from CDSS to assist county agencies, case managers, group home staff, caregivers and others who work with foster youth, in understanding this important topic. The HSD Workgroup met several times between the months of February and October of 2016 with a goal of creating a statewide plan for preventing unintended pregnancy among California’s foster youth and to create various accompanying materials.

In August of 2016, “California’s Plan for the Prevention of Unintended Pregnancy for Youth and Non-Minor Dependents” (SEE LESSON 1) was posted via All County letter (ACL) 16-88. This guide is an extension of the plan and expands upon section III, “Role of the Case Management Worker (Social Worker or Probation Officer).” Throughout this guide, unless otherwise noted, all references to “foster youth” include dependents, NMDs and wards of the court placed in foster care.

It is recommended that county agencies create their own supplemental guidance to coincide with this document. This supplemental guidance could include information for case managers about local county practices and procedures, as well as any available resources within the county for youth, such as health centers/clinics, counseling centers, any other social service agencies, and trainings for youth and/or social workers pertaining to this topic.

A new curriculum, as per the passage of Senate Bill (SB) 89, regarding foster youth and reproductive health will be developed in the upcoming months. This curriculum will be made available to foster youth caregivers, county case managers and others who work with foster youth. When this curriculum is available, it will be announced to county agencies via the issuance of an ACL.
For further background related to CDSS’ efforts surrounding the healthy sexual development of foster youth, please refer to ACLs 14-38, 16-32, 16-82 and 16-88, and All County Information Notices (ACIN) I-60-15, I-40-16, and I-73-16.

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