Ohio Child Advocates: Opioid Crisis Straining Foster Care

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Child advocates say the opioid crisis is overwhelming Ohio’s foster care system as more and more children are removed from the homes of drug-addicted parents.

The Public Children Services Association of Ohio says more than 15,500 children are now in foster care, up from about 12,600 four years ago.

The agency said Thursday in a new report that Ohio is on track to place more than 20,000 children in foster care by 2020.

Angela Sausser is the agency’s executive director. She says more state funding is needed to address the crisis despite increases lawmakers provided earlier this year.

The report comes a day after the federal government reported a record 63,600 overdose deaths last year, two thirds of them involving opioids like heroin, fentanyl and prescription painkillers.