Bill making its way through the Arizona legislature could help grandparents raising grandkids

PHOENIX - Arizona grandparents who are financially struggling to raise their grandkids may be getting some help if a bill making its way through the Legislature becomes law.  

SB 1090, also known as the Grandparent's Stipend would provide $75 a month to a grandparent for each child in their care. The bill was approved by the Senate in February of this year and grandparents like Brenda Gloria are keeping optimistic that it will pass.

"Seventy-five dollars doesn't sound like much but it helps out so much with buying the essentials," Gloria said.

Gloria gained custody of her two grandchildren after CPS took them away from her son and the children's biological mother. Gloria slowly had to change her life to accommodate the needs of the children.

"I went to court, had to deal with lawyers, CPS. I couldn't make work but I didn't want these kids without a family. I ended up getting laid off as a result and I didn't know how to make ends meet," Gloria said.

Gloria is just one of the many grandparents in Arizona who unexpectedly gained custody of their grandchildren. The Children's Action Alliance states there are 60,000 children in the state being raised by grandparents or relatives for part of their childhood.

"There are so many of us. I joined Golden Gate Community Center to help others who are in the same place as me. They helped me and I help them," Gloria said.

Gloria received a $75 a month stipend in 2008 that was removed two years after it was put in place. She hopes lawmakers will notice the need again and reconsider bringing it back again.

"We need help and I was able to get a bed for my boys and clothes. Things these boys need to feel normal," Gloria said.

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