More Prison than College for U.S. Foster Care Youth

He still has the last name of a woman who adopted him in grade school — then gave him back.

From the time he was 3 until he turned 14, Dominic Williamson was bounced to 80 different foster homes. When he turned 18, he found himself alone and homeless, and resorting to a life of crime.

Now, at 20, he has a home more permanent than any he’s ever known.

The Hutchinson Correctional Facility in Kansas.

“I had plans for the future and I kind of ruined it,” he said from prison, where he’s one year into an eight-year sentence. “But how could I be a good kid with all the horrible things happening?”

In the American foster care narrative, prison is where the story leads for many kids like Williamson.

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