October 6, 2023

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Hello Donna,

President Biden signed the bipartisan stopgap bill to avert a government shutdown just hours before the crucial midnight deadline on September 30. While the federal government is now funded through November 17, there is still speculation that another threat of shutdown in November may be imminent. Speaker of the House, Kevin McCarthy, was ousted from his post this week just before the House went into recess. Until a vote is made for McCarthy's replacement, all legislative work is in a holding pattern which could affect decision making for continued government funding next month. As mentioned in last week's newsletter, the effects of a government shutdown on human services may be localized to a few key programs in the short term, but could still cause major disruptions for individuals, children, and families. APHSA will continue to monitor the situation closely and provide updates as needed. 

Legislative Updates

ACF Releases a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

On Monday, October 2nd, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that included seven proposed regulatory provisions to TANF. Read the full notice outlining all the proposed changes.

Read more

Moving Human Services Upstream

ACF Proposes Rule on Protecting LGBTQI+ Youth in Foster Care

This week, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) proposed a rule that would require child welfare agencies to ensure the availability of safe and appropriate placements and services for children in foster care who identify as LGBTQI+. Comments are due November 27th.

Review Proposal

ACF Seeks Comments on Proposed Rule to Strengthen Services and Protection for Unaccompanied Children

ACF also released a proposed rule outlining standards for the placement and release of unaccompanied children, enhanced service provisions, due process protections, and independent monitoring. Comments are due December 4th.

Review Proposal

ACF Releases Proposed Rule on Foster Care Legal Representation

Last week, ACF released a proposed rule that would allow states to claim federal financial participation for the administrative costs of providing legal representation for child, parents or kin caregivers. Comments are due November 27th.

Read more

ACF Releases Final Rule on Kinship Licensing Standards

Effective November 27th, this regulation update allows states to adopt foster family home licensing or approval standards for foster family homes of relatives or kin that differ from non-relative foster family home standards and requires equal foster care maintenance payments in these homes.

View Final Rule

Advancing Social and Economic Mobility

Self-Nomination Form is Live for Cohort 2 of the Youth Systems Building Academy

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Employment and Training Administration’s Youth Systems Building Academy (YSB Academy) provides local workforce systems and their community partners with individualized training and tailored technical assistance as they create plans to explore, design, test, implement, or scale system-level approaches to engage and support young people entering the workforce. Self-nominations for the second cohort of the YSB Academy are now open with a deadline of November 10.

Submit your nomination

HHS Awards $8.1M to Fund the Third Cohort of the Diaper Distribution Pilot

Last week, HHS awarded $8.1 million to fund the third cohort of grant recipients of the diaper distribution demonstration and research pilot program, bringing the total funding to $24.3 million since the program’s inception in September 2022. For more information about the Diaper Distribution Project watch this video from ACF.

Learn more

FNS Posts Research and Evaluation Plan for 2024

The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) posted its research and evaluation plan for the new fiscal year. Research includes to develop thrifty food plans for US territories and non-contiguous states, understanding characteristics and motivations of online SNAP shoppers, developing models for Tribal administration of SNAP, understanding participant experiences in SNAP Employment and Training, policies and practices of SNAP state agencies in screening applicants for exemptions, and more.

View the plan

FNS Issues Updated Guide to Serving ABAWDs

The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) issued an updated version of the Guide to Serving Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWDs) Subject to Time-limited Participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The guide was last published in 2015.

View the guide

FNS Awards PTIG Grants to 6 SNAP Agencies

The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) awarded North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Kansas, District of Columbia, and Monterey County, CA with Process and Technology Improvement Grants (PTIG) to support their Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs (SNAP).

View award summaries

Treasury Releases Report on Impact of Climate Change on Household Finances

The US Department of the Treasury released a report looking at the impact of climate change on American household finances, with particular attention on households that may be most adversely affected. Findings include reduced earnings and access to employee benefits, increased spending on transportation, and higher expenditures on utilities.

Read the press release

Strengthening the Human Services Sector

Revisions to OMB's Uniform Guidance

On September 22nd, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) published its draft Federal Register notice proposing revisions to OMB’s Uniform Guidance. The White House issued an accompanying press release, Dollars Delivering Results: Biden-Harris Administration Publishes Proposed Updates to the Uniform Grants Guidance to Improve the Impact of Federal Grants and Other Assistance. It is important to note that the revisions could potentially simplify the process for Tribes and other organizations without the infrastructure to navigate complex applications for government grants. Once a final version of the proposed guidance is published in the Federal Register, a 60-day comment period will begin.

View the revisions

APHSA Events & Webinars

WEBINAR: How Missouri Has Elevated Its Service Delivery to Help Citizens Grow to Their Fullest Potential

October 11, 3:00 to 4:00 PM EST

Join Strategic Industry PartnerCúram by Merative, to learn how the Missouri Department of Social Services’ vision empowers residents to live safe, healthy, and productive lives.


WEBINAR: Strategies to Increase Digital Literacy and Create Better Long-term Outcomes for Citizens

October 12, 2:00 to 3:00 PM EST

Join Strategic Industry Partner, Adobe, to hear about specific examples of the innovative, government-deployed programs to address the digital divide and create a more equitable distribution of digital assistance and opportunities! 


2023 National Staff Development and Training Association (NSDTA) Education Conference

October 22-25, Sheraton Pittsburgh Hotel at Station Square | Pittsburgh, PA

It's not too late to register for this year's NSDTA Education Conference! Join us as we connect and build bridges to a 21st century workforce.

Visit the Career Center

APHSA Career Center - Post Your Open Positions Today

APHSA serves as a clearinghouse for job opportunities throughout the Human Services sector. Employers reach a wide audience of candidates searching for careers and job seekers will find a number of opportunities throughout the country.

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