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Trending: More contact between foster and biological parents

When parents lose their children to foster care, they're often concerned with what goes on beyond their purview. In the past, biological parents who lost child custody rights to their kids had no way of knowing how their children were being raised, or whether or not their children were in an environment that looked down upon their biological parents.

But times have changed, and many state organizations are now trying to create a better working relationship between foster and biological parents. Contrary to decades past, many experts now believe that open lines of communications can provide a healthier environment for children while also keeping biological parents plugged into the lives of their children.

While the foster parent maintains child custody of the minor, organizations in states across the country, including in Georgia, are arranging meetings during which biological parents can sit down and meet their child's foster parents. They can also discuss how they would like the child to be raised and voice other concerns during these meetings.

In many cases, biological parents also retain some form of visitation rights with their children, allowing them to continue the relationship with their child. This does not apply, however, in cases of abuse.

And because most social services professionals understand that children usually end up back in the care of their biological parents, extra efforts are being made to provide biological parents with resources to help them meet established requirements to regain custody of their children -- and hopefully provide them with a healthier home life.

Source: Boston Globe, "Agencies work to unite foster, biological parents," Kelli Kennedy, Oct. 25, 2012

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