Felony vs Misdemeanor?
I am considering becoming a foster parent which is what has brought me here today. I have a lot of questions but, the first one I ask could very well be the last one I ask. I read a couple of threads/replies that had to do with background checks where hopeful foster parents had misdemeanor issues that very well could prevent them from foster parenting. My story...In 1994 I was arrested for possession of a C/S a felony of course. I was guilty, addicted and a mess. I voluntarily admitted myself into an in-patience treatment center. I completed that, then attended a 2 year after care program and have been clean and sober ever since. It was the first and only time I have been in any type of trouble, with the exception of minor traffic violations. I was placed into the foster care system at the age of 3 but, due to what I consider a flaw in the system, was reunited with my father who had been given full custody. I would have been better off in that flawed system. So...can anyone shed some light on a dark subject? Should I pursue something I have wanted to do for as long as I can remember...or should I stop before I even start? Any feedback will be greatly appreciated... :thanks: and GOD BLESS you all
I am unsure on drug charges but you can always call and ask. I know if there is any kind of assult charges that is a nono. The worst that can happen is they say no but at least you will know!
I've only researched the state we live in; my husband had some legal issues of a similar sort a long time ago. You can usually find this information online if you look around some.....but here, and I believe a lot of places, the less severe crimes will bar you for a shorter period (5 years), moderate crimes (10 years), more serious crimes (15 years), and there are some deal breakers that are lifetime barriers ~ usually things involving kids. Don't count yourself out and do some online research; I would think your situation would not be a barrier at this point. You will definitely have to disclose, but your response should include how these experiences would make you a better foster parent. You have overcome much, and can relate to serious adversity, among other things.
I went to your state's website and found this:

A history or arrest and/or felony conviction (no applicant can be licensed when the applicant has been convicted of a felony). In addition, certain misdemeanors will result in disqualification (i.e., domestic violence, lewdness, battery, or an offense identified in the Utah Criminal Code as offenses against the family, offenses against the person, pornography, prostitution, or any type of sexual offense).

This is a much stricter policy than our state, it looks like if you were actually convicted of a felony, that is an automatic bar. I'm really sorry, their restrictions seem very harsh and rigid. I believe it is often those of us who have gone through the most adversity and still overcome, with hearts that still want to give, that make some of the best foster and adoptive parents. If I were in your shoes, I would at least consider the possibility of moving to another state, but I know that is often not possible.
You can always call DHS and ask too. And there are other ways you can help besides being a foster parent. There are ways you can volunteer and with your experience with controlled substances, as a foster child, and arrest, you might even make a great parent mentor.
I think the key is to be honest. The person who also applied for my dd had been addict. They liked that she could help my dd face some of the things she dealt with in her first home. But she didn't disclose her previous record, and it came back on the background check. The worker still recommended her, but everyone was suspicious because they thought she was hiding something. So, having a record didn't hold her back. That was in the state of Kansas.
Thank You All...
Thank you all for your help, understanding and your ability to not be judgmental. You have given me the courage to make that first phone call, like you said all they can do is tell me no. I will be honest, I have always taken responsibility for my actions it's just a shame that people can't see beyond one's wrongdoings from so many years ago and see them as they are today. Well wish me luck and again, thank you all for your help.
Surely they will see that was 17 yrs ago and you have been on the right track since then. But if not I would certainly try to find another way to help. Your past experience could really help parents and kids that are going thru the same stuff.

GOOD LUCK :cheer: (this is me cheering for you)
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