What’s happening to children in the foster care system?
Bob Simmons is the Executive Director of the Council for Children’s Rights. For 32 years, Bob was a commercial real estate lawyer, but would often advocate for children’s rights on the side. Bob advocates for the wellbeing of children in court and helps them have a voice in tough situations. He has been a volunteer for children’s rights since 1987, and joined the Council for Children’s Rights in 2002. On today’s show, Bob discusses some of the challenges our youth face and what the Council for Children’s Rights does to help foster children.
Key Takeaways:[3:15] Foster children need an environment to heal. They’ve all come from a place of hurt. [4:15] Remember, 1.3 million out of 1.6 million incarcerated people in the United States have spent some time in the foster care system. [5:55] These kinds aren’t naturally bad kids. Due to their trauma, they end up in a circle of distress that they rarely break free from. [6:25] What kind of ‘cycles’ do foster children go through? [9:45] What does the Council for Children’s Rights do? [19:15] Rob is often shocked that the state of California tries 16-17 year olds as adults. [27:10] One of the biggest ways to care for foster children is advocating for them in court. So many children lose court cases because they have no voice. [32:35] What’s Bob’s background in law? [36:55] People often think that it’s great that Bob has found a ‘retirement’ job, but the kicker is that he is working at least 50% harder than he ever has. [39:30] People have asked Bob about leadership, but that topic makes him uncomfortable. Bob believes he’s more a lieutenant than a general. [45:25] Emotionally, how does Bob handle some of these tough court cases involving children? [51:10] Bob discusses some of the success stories he’s overseen. [1:03:40] We can break the cycle of trauma, especially cycles that have been passed on from generation to generation. [1:05:40] What are the three words that perfectly describe Bob’s commitment to these children?
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