Indiana foster parent advocates say the state needs to increase its per diem – the amount parents get each day from the state to help care for the kids in their care.
But the Department of Child Services’ proposed budget doesn’t include any significant increase.
Gov. Eric Holcomb acknowledges the state needs to help foster parents more.
“Now that doesn’t mean there’s an endless amount of money, unfortunately," Holcomb says. "I’m trying to be compassionate about this but we have to be good stewards of the finite resources that we have.”
But Indiana Foster and Adoptive Parents CEO Kristi Cundiff says the current per diem doesn’t pay the bills.
“When you ask someone to, for instance, take a baby home from the hospital and you give that foster parent $25 a day, many foster parents are paying more than that in child care because they’re all still expected to work and hold down jobs,” Cundiff says.
The governor will unveil his full proposed budget in January.