We are proud to announce that Future Effect’s legislation aimed to help youth in foster care overcome barriers to obtaining their driver’s license nationwide has been signed into law on Sunday as part of the latest Covid-19 relief package signed by President Donald Trump.
This legislation is inspired by Keys to Independence, a statewide program in Florida developed by Embrace Families. This program helps foster parents, group homes and foster children navigate the drivers’ license process paying for vehicle insurance costs, driver’s education class and 4 testing fees, practice lessons, practice hours and license fees.
This program has been a resounding success. When it first began in 2014, fewer than 20 youth in Florida’s foster care system has their driver’s license or permit. Now, there are over 800 foster youth with licenses and 1600 with permits.
This program is about more than simply providing access to driver’s licenses – it opens youth in foster care to employment and educational opportunities previously not possible due to their lack of transportation. This program has been key in providing normalcy, allowing youth in foster care to have the same adolescent experiences and milestones as other youth their age.
This legislation will provide states with the funding and assistance needed to develop similar programs across the nation. This bill is truly a win for the country’s foster care system.