Youth in foster care converge on B.C. legislature

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VICTORIA -- More than 50 current and former youth in foster care are converging upon B.C.'s legislature Wednesday to meet with politicians and advocate for improved support.

Policy Solutions Day is intended to connect British Columbians who are in, or grew up in, the province's foster care system with politicians in an effort to improve the support that youth receive when they are transitioned out of foster care when they turn 19.

"Our journeys through care are filled with trauma and adversity," said event organizer Dylan Cohen. "And at 19, we're thrust out by the caregiver who took us away, told we no longer need their services."

"This is not what most kids go through, let alone those struggling like us," he said.

According to the group Fostering Change, the need for universal and comprehensive supports for youth as they age out of government-run care is more urgent than ever. Advocates will meet with Premier John Horgan, his ministers, several MLAs and a range of local organizations to share their stories and experiences in the foster care system to help inspire change.

At 2 p.m., the group also plans to stage a "family portrait" with cutouts of B.C. ministers to represent the government's role in foster care children's' lives.

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