'Miscommunication' Frustrates OKC Foster Mother - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |

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'Miscommunication' Frustrates OKC Foster Mother

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Tana Puckett is on DHS's adoptive parents list. She's waiting for a chance to open her doors to a foster child and thought that time had come on New Year's Eve. Puckett says that's when she got a call from her social worker. Tana Puckett is on DHS's adoptive parents list. She's waiting for a chance to open her doors to a foster child and thought that time had come on New Year's Eve. Puckett says that's when she got a call from her social worker.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

An apparent misunderstanding with Department of Human Services (DHS) is highlighting the challenges of finding foster kids homes.

Tana Puckett is on DHS's adoptive parents list. She's waiting for a chance to open her doors to a foster child and thought that time had come on New Year's Eve. Puckett says that's when she got a call from her social worker.

"She called and told me a new law that requires foster kids 6 and under live in a home and not a shelter, goes into effect January 1st," says Puckett.

Puckett says the social worker also told her she called every prospective adoptive parent on her list, asking if they could take in a child before the Jan 1 deadline. Puckett couldn't believe how "last minute" DHS appeared to be handling the situation.

"What she told me is that it was the law," says Puckett.

In the end, she agreed to take in a child, and was told she'd be getting a call back immediately. She still hasn't heard anything more from DHS. However, there is no law requiring a foster home for every child age 6 and younger.

"It sounds like a miscommunication," says DHS Spokeswoman Cherry Powell, about the New Years' Eve call Puckett received.

Powell tells News 9, although it's not a law, it's a DHS goal to find every foster kid under the age of 6 a foster home. Powell says the need for foster parents is always big and case workers have been called parents on the adoptive list to see if they will foster a child as well.

DHS says in the last year and half the number of foster children in Oklahoma has grown by more than 2,000, for a total of over 11,000 children. DHS hasn't reached its goal, but says the number of children, 6 and under, in shelters continues to go down.

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