The Child Care (Amendment) Act 2015 strengthens the legislative provisions regarding aftercare, imposing a statutory duty on Tusla to prepare an aftercare plan for an eligible child or eligible young person. The aim is to create an explicit, as opposed to implicit, statement of Tusla’s duty to satisfy itself as to the child’s or young person’s need for assistance by preparing a plan that identifies those needs for aftercare supports.
Young people who have had a care history with Tusla are entitled to an aftercare service based on their assessed needs. The core eligible age range for aftercare is from 18 years up to 21 years. This can be extended until the completion of a course of education in which a young person is engaged, up to the age of 23 years.
The relevant sections of the Act of 2015 were commenced with effect from 1 September 2017.
Attached are copies of the National Aftercare Policy for Alternative Care and supporting documentation. Tusla will be organising information sessions countrywide in the coming months for their staff and foster carers; keep watch for notification and ask your social worker if one is planned in your area.