Foster Care and Confidentiality

Almost everyone has information they share within their families that they would not want other people to know about. When children and families become part of the foster care system, an overwhelming amount of their private family information becomes known to people outside their family.

~ Used and adapted with permission from the Wisconsin’s Child Welfare System

There are laws that protect a family’s private information so that it may be shared only with those who need to know the information and have authorization to have access to it. This is the essence of what confidentiality means – keeping information private.

Foster parents must respect the confidentiality of children in foster care and their families. Information about a child placed in the foster home or that child’s family CANNOT be discussed with friends, neighbors, relatives, professionals, or others who are not specifically authorized to receive the information. Anyone receiving or sharing information must do so according to a signed consent to release information.

Confidential information includes sensitive information and documents provided by the court, placement organisation, the child, the child’s family, and the foster parents. It may be about the family’s background, the child’s and family’s medical history or diagnoses, services being provided to the child or family, and many other things.

Respecting confidentiality helps build relationships with; and shows respect to the child and the child’s family.

Key Points Regarding Confidentiality:

  • ™Children in foster care cannot be photographed or interviewed by newspaper, radio, or television reporters without written permission from the parent or legal guardian.
  • Foster parents cannot talk to any media person about the child placed in their home.
  • If someone wants information about the child and is not sure of their authority to have that information, do not provide any information. Instead, direct the person to the child’s foster care caseworker.

~ Used and adapted with permission from the Wisconsin’s Child Welfare System


About Helouise Steenkamp

I'm a 45 plus, Devoted Wife and Mother. Adonai has blessed us with two Amazingly Wonderful Sons. We have had the privilege of being Place of Safety parents for 1 1/2 years and there after foster parents to a Darling Princess for 5 years. She was reconciled with her biological parents in Dec'14. Our hearts are still aching from the loss, but we know that as we trust Adonai with our salvation, so we can trust Him with her future. We welcomed our new 4 year old foster child on 05JUN'15.
This entry was posted in Foster Care Advice, Place of Safety Advice, Training, Words of Advice. Bookmark the permalink.

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