Foster Care Children's Bill of Rights

Section 170-G:21

    170-G:21 Foster Care Children's Bill of Rights. –
A child who is placed in a foster home or other out-of-home placement pursuant to a juvenile court proceeding under RSA 169-B, RSA 169-C, or RSA 169-D shall have the right or privilege:
I. To be supported in a healthy growth and developmental process from early childhood to adulthood and to be protected from all forms of abuse.
II. To receive appropriate and team recommended treatments, including counseling, medical care, and dental treatment, within a reasonable period.
II-a. To receive appropriate medical supervision of any prescribed psychotropic medications.
III. To receive support from department staff, and his or her foster family or residential provider in maintaining positive contact with significant people, such as relatives, friends, teachers, and community supports, including assistance with obtaining contact information, transportation, and reasonable visitation opportunities.
IV. To develop a group of supportive adults, which may, when appropriate, include department staff, foster parents, residential staff, therapists, and other individuals with responsibility for case planning.
V. To be treated with courtesy and respect by department staff, foster parents, residential staff, and providers without regard to race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, or disability and to participate in activities associated with his or her religious beliefs.
VI. To participate in "normal" activities consistent with his or her age and developmental level, such as opening a bank account, celebrating birthdays, participating in graduations, and obtaining an identity card, unless restricted by the child's treatment plan, case plan, or the availability of financial resources.
VII. To receive notice of any meetings regarding the child's case and to have opportunities to resolve potential barriers to participation, such as a lack of transportation or conflict with the child's academic schedule.
VIII. To receive timely information about decisions that affect the child's life and to be notified of changes that affect his or her case plan, treatment plan, permanency, safety, stability, or wellbeing, and to have his or her voice considered in these decisions.
IX. To be informed of all assistance that the department offers foster children related to permanency planning, education, employment, housing, and wellbeing.
X. To receive assistance in acquiring life skills, education, training, and career guidance to accomplish personal goals, prepare for the future, and to become a self-sufficient adult after the child's transition from care.
XI. To have an achievable transition plan when the child leaves care that is created by the foster child with the help of his or her support group.
XII. To attend and participate in court hearings to the extent permitted by the court and appropriate given the age and experience of the child.
XIII. To utilize technology, such as social networking sites and cell phones, based on the child's level of maturity and responsibility and taking into account the environment in which the child is living, the support of his or her treatment team, the financial costs involved, and the child's ability to maintain privileges.
XIV. To be informed of the process for contacting the child protective services worker's supervisor, or other department staff, the guardian ad litem, and the office of the child advocate.
XV. To be informed by the department of the rights set forth in this section and to receive assistance in obtaining and enforcing them.

Source. 2018, 220:2, eff. June 8, 2018. 2021, 182:11, eff. Jan. 1, 2022.