The Adoption and Safe Family Act (A.S.F.A.) was enacted by the federal government in 1997 because of the growing national concerns that there are too many children who linger for too long in foster care. A.S.F.A. sets standards for the operation of state foster care programs by requiring child welfare agencies to pay increased attention to children's health and safety, and their need for permanent families. One of the major changes created by ASFA is the requirement for a new type of hearing which is called a Permanency Hearing. At the Permanency hearing the court determines the appropriateness of the agency’s plan to create permanency for the child.
On February 11, 1999, New York State Governor George Pataki signed legislation to implement A.S.F.A. in New York State. Every state was required to adopt this act. On August 23, 2005, Governor Pataki signed the New Permanency Bill which was effective Dec. 21, 2005. It consolidates permanency hearing provisions regarding abused, neglected, voluntarily placed and freed children into a new Article 10A of the Family Court Act.
A.S.F.A. requires more frequent judicial reviews, criminal records screening, extensive judicial monitoring and documentation of children's progress toward achieving a permanent home, expands and expedites filings of proceedings to terminate parental rights and it imposes monetary sanctions when a state does not comply with these federal standards.
As a result of the adoption of Phase II of the Family Justice Program the Permanency Planning division was established. Planning was created to manage and monitor the filing of child protective (Child Neglect and Abuse) cases filed in NYC Family Courts. Permanency Planning offices also monitor the Juvenile Delinquency and Persons In Need of Supervision (P.I.N.S.) cases filed in NYC Family Courts.
Whenever a child is removed from his or her home and placed outside of their home on any of the above mentioned cases Permanency Planning has the job of making sure the child is not left in placement or foster care any longer than the court's order. In other words, until there is a Permanent Plan for the child's future.
Below are links to more detailed information into each of the case types that Permanency Planning monitors.
- Abused or Neglected Children
- Family Treatment Court
- Foster Care Placement
- Juvenile Delinquency
- Persons In Need of Supervision (PINS)
- Guide for Parents
(what to expect if a Child Protective Case is filed against you)
- NYC/Administration for Children's Services (ACS) Guides