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Elevating Youth Voice to the National Stage!

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Mockingbird Youth will have the opportunity to speak directly to members of Congress and their staff.

Today, members and staff from the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth will visit Seattle for a two-day listening tour stop. The Caucus, co-founded by Seattle's own Congressman Jim McDermott, is dedicated to protecting and promoting the welfare of children and youth in foster care. In addition to Congressman McDermott, the Caucus is Co-Chaired by Congresswoman Karen Bass (CA-37), Congresswoman Michelle Bachman (MN-06) and Congressman Tom Marino (PA-10). The Caucus currently has over 100 members from the U.S. House of Representatives and has been scheduling listening tour stops around the country in order to educate its members on the realities children and youth in care face, as well as the promising policies being implemented at the state level.

The Mockingbird Society has worked closely with organizers to ensure that youth voice has a significant presence during the visit. Members of our Mockingbird Youth Network will provide a perspective that is absent from the policy briefings and academic research. Youth will speak to the urgency that comes with the many issues facing foster children and youth while showing the power and hope for change that youth voice represents.Youth will also educate Congressmembers on the inappropriate prescription of psychiatric medication in foster care, based on their own experiences in care and on the youth-led efforts to address this important issue.

We are honored to be a part of the national discussion on how we can improve outcomes for the over 400,000 children and youth in foster care and for the over 30,000 that age out of care each year.