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Framework for Freedom Budget Highlights Governor Ron DeSantis’ Enduring Commitment to Supporting Strong and Resilient Families

June 20, 2023

For Immediate Release: June 16, 2023
Contact: @email 

Framework for Freedom Budget Highlights Governor Ron DeSantis’ Enduring Commitment to Supporting Strong and Resilient Families FY2023-2024 Budget Investments Enhance Prevention Services
and Increase Access and Availability of Behavioral Health Services

TALLAHASSEE, Fla – Today, Department of Children and Families (Department) Secretary Shevaun Harris commended Governor DeSantis’ Framework for Freedom Budget, and the continued dedication and commitment to supporting strong and resilient families in Florida. The Framework for Freedom Budget includes $4.7 billion in funding to the Department as part of the state’s ongoing investment in children and families, along with enhancing prevention services, increasing availability of and access to behavioral health services, and supporting updates to the Department’s systems, thereby ensuring additional program effectiveness and efficiencies.

“Thanks to the Governor’s unwavering support, our Department is expanding the resources and services needed to best serve our state’s children and families,” Secretary Harris said. “Through the Framework for Freedom budget, we can further improve these vital and innovative services for our communities as our state works to positively impact the lives of families and children. These investments are shining examples of the Governor and First Lady’s continued commitment to the well-being and care of children and families in our state.”

Highlights for Florida’s children and families in the 2023-2024 budget for the Department include:

  • $78 million in funding for our state mental health treatment facilities; the Department will maintain and expand bed capacity, enabling the Department to serve those with persistent and serious mental illness;
  • $156 million to support a comprehensive array of behavioral services through the standard and supplemental block grants for uninsured/underinsured individuals with substance abuse disorders, serious mental illness, and serious emotional disorders;
  • $298 million in funding to support prevention, treatment and recovery services to combat the opioid epidemic through the State Opioid Response Grant and the State Opioid Settlement;
  • $19 million to provide housing supports for families and individuals experiencing homelessness or those at risk of homelessness.  This funding will provide rapid rehousing services and support more than 4,000 families, as well as create further supports for emergency shelters, street outreach, and transitional housing to support more than 500 households;
  • Nearly $22 million to fund local prevention grant programs to improve outcomes for children and families served by the Department; 
  • $35 million in investments to update the systems that support public assistance benefit eligibility determinations (ACCESS) and child welfare management (Florida Safe Families Network);
  • $1.1 million to onboard an additional 10 Family Navigators; the Family Navigation initiative enhances the safety and well-being of Florida children following a report of potential child abuse or neglect;
  • $4.5 million for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) education continuation funding which will provide tools and methods to educate participants to make healthy and cost-effective food choices within a limited budget to improve the quality of diets, reduce chronic disease and obesity, and change behavior; and
  • $1.5 million in additional supports for survivors of human trafficking.