Foster kids’ stories inspire moves to reform

Capital News Service
LANSING – The number of Michigan children in the state’s foster care system is at its lowest in almost a decade, but anecdotes from kids within the system have legislators considering bipartisan reform. First term Rep. Jim Runestad, a Republican from White Lake, said he has spoken to Rep. John Chirkun, a Democrat from Roseville, about working together to improve the foster care system. Chirkun could not be reached for comment. About 18 foster children told legislators recently about their experiences in the system, highlighting issues such as sibling separation and limited resources available once they age out of the system. The children told their stories through an event called KidSpeak, organized by the nonprofit Michigan’s Children to help young people directly address legislators on issues affecting them.