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senate Bill S. 1786

Social Security Act Changes Aimed at Keep Siblings in Foster Care Together

Argument in favor

Keeps families together, and data have shown keeping siblings together makes foster kids feel safer and be healthier.

Argument opposed

Encourages a one-size-fits-all model; in limited situations, children should be apart from both parents and siblings.

bill Progress

  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Finance
    IntroducedDecember 10th, 2013

What is Senate Bill S. 1786?

This bill deals with siblings and foster care. Specifically, the bill alters a portion of the Social Security Act that currently states that siblings lose their status as siblings when their parents’ rights are terminated. This makes the siblings no longer legally considered to be family, and in turn undermines a current law  stating that siblings be placed together whenever possible.


The bill impacts children in foster care who have siblings.

Cost of Senate Bill S. 1786

A CBO cost is unavailable.

More Information


Of Note:

  • The National Adoption Information Clearinghouse estimates that 65-85% of U.S. foster children come from siblings groups, and studies of siblings in the child welfare system suggest that 60% to 73% of U.S. foster children have siblings who also enter foster care.
  • Siblings who entered the foster care system within 30 days of each other had almost 4 times the odds of residing together than children who entered care at different times.
  • Studies show that larger sibling groups are more likely than smaller groups to be placed separately, not only because fewer foster homes are willing to accept large groups of children, but also because large sibling groups are less likely to enter foster care at the same time.
  • Children in group care had twice the odds of being separated, whereas children with siblings in related care were much less likely to be separated.
  • Preschoolers placed with siblings had a higher rate of psychological problems prior to placement, but despite this history, showed significantly fewer emotional and behavioral problems in placement than those separated from their siblings.


Sibling Connections Act

Official Title

A bill to encourage the placement of children in foster care with siblings.

    Siblings must be kept together the family has already been separated keep the kids together. It's all they have... Each other