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State-level Guidance Relating to COVID-19 and Foster Care

Human Trafficking Search’s research found that at least fifty percent of child sex trafficking victims lived in foster care or a group home run by the state at one point.  There are many reasons a child ends up in foster care, the most common according to our research are parental substance abuse, alcohol abuse, domestic violence or neglect.  Experts are warning that we are likely to see an increase in domestic violence and child abuse since people are being asked to stay at home as much as possible and many people are coming under economic hardship.  Social distancing required to keep the coronavirus at bay has required states to alert their regular procedures with respect to child welfare.  This page provides information on actions states are taking.  We will continue to update this page, adding information on all states.  If you are aware of state level action that is not listed here, please email us (info[@] and we will add it to this page.

New York:

  • The New York state government create a page to consolidate information on COVID-19. On March 20, guidance for foster care and preventive staff was issued.

New Jersey:

  • No information


  • The County Welfare Directors Association of California is compiling COVID-19 guidance, including child welfare and foster care materials.
  • Los Angeles County’s Department of Children and Family Services issued guidance on March 19.


  • Washington State Department of Children, Youth & Families create a COVID-19 page. Information on foster care emergency license waivers can be found here.  The state also has guidance for foster care group home facilities.


  • No information


  • Illinois Department of Children & Family Services issued a letter to foster care parents


  • Florida has currently not provided guidance on child welfare and COVID-19. Please check here for updates.


  • Louisiana Department of Children & Family Services created a page providing COVID-19 guidance for foster parents.


  • No information



  • No information


  • The Office of the Child’s Representative has a page providing guidance on COVID-19, including guidance for those who are aging out of foster care.


  • No information



  • Ohio’s Department of Jobs and Family Services developed a Frequently Asked Questions document that includes questions about foster care.


  • The Indiana government’s website directs those interested in updates relating to COVID-19 and foster care to visit Indian Foster Care’s COVID page.


  • The Department of Children’s Service has developed a page to provide COVID-19 related information, including a section for foster parents.


  • No information

North Carolina:

  • No information


  • The Wisconsin Department of Children and Families has issued guidance for foster care parents and child welfare workers. This page is being updated as new guidance is developed.


  • Arizona’s Department of Child Safety has provided information on a range of issues relating to foster care, which can be found here.


  • No information


  • Missouri’s Department of Social Services has a COVID-19 providing updated information, including guidance on parent, child visitation for children in foster care.


  • Voices for Virginia’s Children issued Virginia foster care policy recommendations


  • Jefferson County issued a standing order regarding visitation for children in foster care.

South Carolina:

  • No information


  • Mississippi Department of Child Protection Services issued guidance here.



  • Oregon’s Department of Human Services provided information on their operating status during the coronavirus pandemic.


  • Minnesota’s Department of Human Services provided information on changes to licensing of foster care providers as a result of COVID-19, and will provide further updates on this page.


  • Governor Hutchinson developed a proposal which included increased support for foster families.


  • The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services issued guidance, including for social workers on home visits.
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