FPS Foster Care ‘RE-DO’ in Region 2

151030_TricksTreats_redesign_NEWIn October, DFPS announced the next area to undergo Foster Care Redesign will be the 30 counties in Region 2. This is the second attempt at Foster Care Redesign in the Region. The first Foster Care Redesign contract for a Single Source Continuum Contractor (SSCC) covered Region 2/9, and lasted only a year. Providence Service Corporation, an Arizona based for-profit company, walked away from the contract in August 2014 after losing over $2 Million. Since then, Tarrant County and 6 other counties in Region 3 have gone through the Redesign, with ACH acting as the SSCC.

One major difference between the earlier failed Redesign attempt and the current version is that SSCCs will receive more funding. In addition to being paid based on a blended foster care rate, SSCCs will also receive an additional $1,200 per year for every child in their care to cover administrative costs. While private, for-profit agencies will be treated to more state funding, those of us on the frontlines got tricked with a pay cut because of increases in benefit contributions.

When Foster Care Redesign was approved by the Legislature in 2011, it was praised as a way for Texas to improve outcomes without increasing costs. The inability of SSCCs to provide services or improve outcomes without more funding makes it clear that State Legislators have not committed enough resources and funding to meet the needs of children in Texas’ care.

Legislator’s indifference to our stagnant pay is another clear indication that profits for private agencies are a higher priority than the needs of state employees. The pay cut will undoubtedly limit the effect of internal changes to reduce turnover rates within our agency. Many of our colleagues who are dedicated to serving our clients will have to leave the agency because they can no longer afford to work here. Union members have already begun the fight for the next pay raise.


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