TALLAHASSEE — On Dec. 5, Governor Ron DeSantis announced the Focus on Florida’s Future budget with $4.6 billion in funding for the Department of Children and Families (Department) to continue to support strong and resilient families. This funding includes investments to enhance prevention services, increase access and availability of behavioral health services, and technology improvements to the Department’s systems to increase efficiencies and program effectiveness.
“Since Governor DeSantis took office, we have seen a continual commitment in supporting Florida’s families,” said Department Secretary Shevaun Harris. “The Focus on Florida’s Future budget solidifies the Governor as the most pro-family governor and will enhance our ability to support strong and resilient families. Every year we are able to prioritize our prevention efforts and enhance service delivery to the families and individuals we serve.”
Governor DeSantis is supporting the Department with key investments, including:
• $77.6 million to address opioid addiction prevention, treatment, and recovery through the State Opioid Settlement. Specifically, the funding will support on-demand mobile medication assisted treatment, court diversion programs, the distribution of life saving treatments such as naloxone, prevention campaigns, peer supports, recovery housing, and other treatment and recovery support services.
• $13.5 million to support families that have already adopted and an additional $9.8 million to increase and expand access to adoption incentives for families that choose to adopt from foster care.
“I want to applaud Governor DeSantis, his executive team, and the State Agencies of Florida for their continued focus on and support for behavioral health prevention, intervention, and treatment,” said Jay Reeve, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, Apalachee Center, Chair of the Commission on Mental Health and Substance Abuse. “As we all work together to improve the lives of Florida families, we can see that our work is positively changing lives, and transforming our communities.”
Additional items in the Focus on Florida’s Future Budget:
• $36.6 million to continue funding the modernization of the newly launched MyACCESS Portal.
• $25 million to continue the modernization of the Child Welfare Information System.
• $18 million in additional supports for survivors of domestic violence.
• Over $5.2 million to provide foster parents with a cost-of-living increase.
• $6.7 million to fund local prevention grant programs to improve outcomes for children and families served by the Department.