The Arkansas Department of Human Services announced it will do away with its policy prohibiting unmarried couples living together from serving as foster parents.
“After all the input provided not only from the hearing … but the input provided from our stakeholders with whom we work every day and the general public, and after having some internal discussions, we decided that the best approach to take is to look at these on a case-by-case basis and to retain that flexibility,” DHS spokeswoman Julie Munsell said.
Gov. Mike Beebe’s spokesman Matt DeCample said the governor met with DHS officials to discuss the policy.
“What the governor wants is to find all the ways that we can to find more good, qualified foster homes for the kids that need them,” DeCample said. “Everyone we’ve talked to in the foster care system, whether it’s the workers at DCFS (the Division of Children and Family Services), whether it’s parents, whether it’s judges … they all have the same mantra, which is, we need more good homes right now, not less, and a blanket policy like that would confine us as far as where we could look.”