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Foster Homes Overwhelmed By Opioid Epidemic

MGN Online

Florida foster care providers are struggling to keep up with the number of children entering the system as a result of opioid-related deaths. 

The opioid epidemic has been the center of debate recently, but one important group is often left out of the conversation.

As parents overdose, are sent to jail or die, children are forced to enter an already-burdened foster care system.

In the last three years, the number of children in foster care has tripled says the Heart Gallery of Florida’s Yvette DuBose.

"We already have a shortage, period," says DuBose. "Now with this opioid crisis it has really ruined a lot of homes and families and divided these families and there’s nowhere to send them."

DuBose urges the legislature to address the increased need for foster homes in opioid legislation. She says funding needs to be allocated to recruit new foster and adoptive homes. 

Shawn Mulcahy is a reporter and All Things Considered host for WFSU. He graduated from Florida State University in 2019 with majors in public relations and political science. He was previously an intern at WFSU, and worked as an Account Coordinator at RB Oppenheim Associates.