McGeorge School of Law

Legislative Clinic Student Bill Makes Progress

March 23, 2018

Assemblymember Maienschein, McGeorge students Michelle Evans and Keri Firth

Assemblymember Maienschein, McGeorge students Michelle Evans and Keri Firth 

McGeorge Legislative and Public Policy Clinic students, Keri Firth and Michelle Evans, co-sponsors of AB-1784 Resource families: pilot program: supportive services, testified at the Assembly Human Services Committee on March 6, 2018. AB-1784 passed out of the committee unanimously. It will continue through the legislative process to the Appropriations Committee next.

Michelle and Keri drafted this bill as part of the Legislative and Public Policy Clinic, under the direction of alumnus Rex Frazier '00, supervising attorney of the Clinic. The idea for the bill began in August 2017 as a policy proposal which the students spent months refining as they met with various interest groups and stakeholders. The students worked with Assemblymember Maienschein's staffers to develop their policy proposal for the Clinic. His office turned their bill language into the Legislative Counsel's office, and when they returned the bill language, Assemblymember Maienschein introduced it to the Assembly and the policy proposal became AB-1784 which is now in the process of becoming a law.

AB-1784 would "require the State Department of Social Services to establish and facilitate a pilot program, as specified, for counties that elect to participate, to increase placement stability for foster youth and facilitate greater resource family retention through strengths-based, skills-based, trauma-informed coaching." Read more about the bill here.

Listen to a podcast where Keri and Michelle discuss how they are working on a bill affecting California's foster care system that would create a pilot program for counties to give foster parents access to in home coaching after they receive a foster child. This is the first episode in a new series of podcasts called The Clinic by CAP·impact, a project of the nonpartisan Capital Center for Law & Policy at the McGeorge School of Law.

In the Legislative and Public Policy Clinic's first four years, Gov. Jerry Brown signed 10 of the 13 bills students developed that made it to his desk.