‘A Year is a Long Time in the Life of a Child Act’
Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday signed into law the “A Year is a Long Time in the Life of a Child Act,” a measure designed to reduce the amount of time abused and neglected children spend in foster care.
A top priority of the Florida Guardian ad Litem Program, which represents these children in dependency court proceedings, the measure also garnered strong backing from the Legislature. It passed both chambers unanimously after passionate speeches by sponsors Sen. Ben Albritton of Wauchula and Rep. Spencer Roach of North Fort Myers in their respective chambers.
SB 262 and HB 421 aim to improve communication and accountability in the dependency process so that maltreated children can reach safe, permanent homes within one year. That could mean reunification with the parents, adoption or placement with a permanent guardian, such as a relative.