Opioid Crisis Overwhelms Foster Care System

South Florida’s opioid epidemic isn’t just affecting users of the drugs, but also the children many addicted adults are charged to protect. This problem is growing from about 45 kids a month to about 100.


Dependency on a drug causes a person to act differently than they would under normal circumstances. Withdrawal can be incredibly painful, so people begin to prioritize the drug over all else. Unfortunately this often includes their families. According to ChildNet, the counties of Palm Beach and Broward have seen a one hundred and fifteen percent increase in children needing to be removed for safety in just the last four months.


Addiction to opioids and other drugs often results in neglect of the children. The focus is on accessing the next hit and the addicted parents can fail to provide food for the children–let alone the love and emotional support necessary to raise a healthy child.

Foster Care and Shelters

Children who have been removed from their families often go to foster parents. Unfortunately there are not nearly enough foster parents available. Children who aren’t able to be placed with a foster home are placed in a shelter. Shelters provide far less attention to a child’s needs than a foster family can. This situation will only be further complicated by an upcoming new law which will transfer funding away from shelters and instead focus on funding the foster care system. This is good and bad because it will help placing children with foster families, but it will also remove funding which is desperately needed for the shelters.

Families Staying Together

No one should have to be removed from their family. Separating parents from children should only ever be a last resort. This problem needs tackled at its roots. We need to systematically address why people are getting addicted to opioids and other drugs. By doing so, we can prevent new people from becoming addicted, and we can humanely help those who are addicted so they can get the help they need and their family can stay together.

South Florida detox centers can help you if you are addicted. Please let us help you build the tools to beat your addiction and keep your family together. Call us today at (844) 299-0618.


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