So a lot of states and counties and agencies have wildly varying opinions on Facebook. Not all agencies have even addressed this concept, and some agencies have taken very hard stances on Facebook.
The best advice for Facebook and Foster Kids is to ask your agency for a written example of their policy.
In my county, foster children are not allowed anywhere near Facebook. You cannot talk about them, post pictures of them, or be friends with them or their parents on facebook. The county allows the kids to have a Facebook at the discretion of the foster parents, but the foster parents are not allowed to have any references to the foster kids.
This all comes down to the confidentiality laws. There is so much that people could discern about the children from Facebook that it would break most confidentiality laws. Confidentiality will be touched on in a different blog post so I won’t get into it too much. In fact, this post is going to be short all together because the cardinal rule is simple.
Before you foster and facebook, get the rules in writing.
- Can you help a foster child find a home? (wtvr.com)
- Bill to Help Foster Youths With School Records (abcnews.go.com)
- 12 Days of Caring: Agency helps parents prepare for foster children (pennlive.com)
- DCF seeking quality foster families (newsherald.com)