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SB-597 Human trafficking: victim confidentiality.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 06/21/2017 09:00 PM
SB597:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  June 21, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  May 26, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  April 20, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 597


Introduced by Senator Leyva

February 17, 2017


An act to amend Sections 6205, 6205.5, 6206, 6206.7, 6208.5, and 6209.5 6209.5, and 6209.7 of the Government Code, relating to human trafficking.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 597, as amended, Leyva. Human trafficking: victim confidentiality.
Existing law authorizes victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking to complete an application to be approved by the Secretary of State for the purpose of enabling state and local agencies to respond to requests for public records without disclosing a program participant’s residence address contained in any public record and otherwise provide for confidentiality of identity for that person, subject to specified conditions. Any person who makes a false statement in an application is guilty of a misdemeanor.
This bill would make this program available to a victim of human trafficking, as defined. The bill would also make the program available to household members, as defined, of a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking, excluding the perpetrator, if applicable. The bill would make additional conforming changes.
By including victims of human trafficking and specified household members of victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking, this bill would impose new duties on local public officials and expand the scope of an existing crime, thereby creating a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 6205 of the Government Code is amended to read:

6205.
 The Legislature finds that persons attempting to escape from actual or threatened domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking, frequently establish new names or addresses in order to prevent their assailants or probable assailants from finding them. The purpose of this chapter is to enable state and local agencies to respond to requests for public records without disclosing the changed name or location of a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking, to enable interagency cooperation with the Secretary of State in providing name and address confidentiality for victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking, and to enable state and local agencies to accept a program participant’s use of an address designated by the Secretary of State as a substitute mailing address.

SEC. 2.

 Section 6205.5 of the Government Code is amended to read:

6205.5.
 Unless the context clearly requires otherwise, the definitions in this section apply throughout this chapter.
(a) “Address” means a residential street address, school address, or work address of an individual, as specified on the individual’s application to be a program participant under this chapter.

(b)

(b) “Cohabitant” has the same meaning as in subdivision (b) of Section 18291 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
(c) “Domestic violence” means an act as defined in Section 6211 of the Family Code.

(c)

(d) “Domicile” means a place of habitation as defined in Section 349 of the Elections Code.

(d)

(e) “Household member” means an adult person who resides at the same residential address as the applicant or participant and is related to the applicant or participant by blood, marriage, registered domestic partnership, adoption, or is in a cohabitated relationship. a cohabitant of an applicant or participant.

(e)

(f) “Human trafficking” means any act punishable pursuant to Section 236.1 of the Penal Code.

(f)

(g) “Program participant” means a person certified as a program participant under Section 6206.

(g)

(h) “Sexual assault” means an act or attempt made punishable by Section 220, 261, 261.5, 262, 264.1, 266c, 269, 285, 286, 288, 288.5, 288a, 289, or 647.6 of the Penal Code.

(h)

(i) “Stalking” means an act as defined in Section 646.9 of the Penal Code.

SEC. 3.

 Section 6206 of the Government Code is amended to read:

6206.
 (a) An adult person, a parent or guardian acting on behalf of a minor, or a guardian acting on behalf of an incapacitated person, who is domiciled in California, may apply to the Secretary of State to have an address designated by the Secretary of State serve as the person’s address or the address of the minor or incapacitated person. An application shall be completed in person at a community-based victims’ assistance program or a community-based assistance program that serves victims of elder or dependent adult abuse pursuant to the Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act (Chapter 11 (commencing with Section 15600) of Part 3 of Division 9 of the Welfare and Institutions Code). The application process shall include a requirement that the applicant shall meet with a victims’ assistance counselor and receive orientation information about the program. The Secretary of State shall approve an application if it is filed in the manner and on the form prescribed by the Secretary of State and if it contains all of the following:
(1) A sworn statement by the applicant that the applicant has good reason to believe both of the following:
(A) That the applicant, or the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made, is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking, or is a household member of a victim who is making or has made an application pursuant to this section, unless the applicant is the perpetrator of the crime which provided the basis for that victim’s application.
(B) That the applicant fears for his or her safety, the safety of his or her children or household members, or the safety of the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made.
(2) If the applicant alleges that the basis for the application is that the applicant, or the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made, is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking, the application may be accompanied by evidence including, but not limited to, any of the following:
(A) Police, court, or other government agency records or files.
(B) Documentation from a domestic violence or sexual assault program if the person is alleged to be a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking.
(C) Documentation from a legal, clerical, medical, or other professional from whom the applicant or person on whose behalf the application is made has sought assistance in dealing with the alleged domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking.
(D) Any other evidence that supports the sworn statement, such as a statement from any other individual with knowledge of the circumstances that provides the basis for the claim, or physical evidence of the act or acts of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking.
(3) If the basis for the application is that the applicant, or the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made, is a household member of a person described in paragraph (2), the application shall include the name of that person and evidence that the applicant is a household member.
(4) The name and last known address of the applicant’s minor child or children, the name and last known address of the other parent or parents of the minor child or children of the applicant, and all court orders related to the minor child or children of the applicant, and legal counsel of record in those cases.
(5) A designation of the Secretary of State as agent for purposes of service of process and for the purpose of receipt of mail.
(A) Service on the Secretary of State of any summons, writ, notice, demand, or process shall be made by delivering to the address confidentiality program personnel of the office of the Secretary of State two copies of the summons, writ, notice, demand, or process.
(B) If a summons, writ, notice, demand, or process is served on the Secretary of State, the Secretary of State shall immediately cause a copy to be forwarded to the program participant at the address shown on the records of the address confidentiality program so that the summons, writ, notice, demand, or process is received by the program participant within three days of the Secretary of State’s having received it.
(C) The Secretary of State shall keep a record of all summonses, writs, notices, demands, and processes served upon the Secretary of State under this section and shall record the time of that service and the Secretary of State’s action.
(D) The office of the Secretary of State and any agent or person employed by the Secretary of State shall be held harmless from any liability in any action brought by any person injured or harmed as a result of the handling of first-class mail on behalf of program participants.
(6) The mailing address where the applicant can be contacted by the Secretary of State, and the phone number or numbers where the applicant can be called by the Secretary of State.
(7) The address or addresses that the applicant requests not be disclosed for the reason that disclosure will increase the risk of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking.
(8) The signature of the applicant and of any individual or representative of any office designated in writing under Section 6208.5 who assisted in the preparation of the application, and the date on which the applicant signed the application.
(b) Applications shall be filed with the office of the Secretary of State.
(c) Upon filing a properly completed application, the Secretary of State shall certify the applicant as a program participant. Applicants shall be certified for four years following the date of filing unless the certification is withdrawn or invalidated before that date. The Secretary of State shall by rule establish a renewal procedure. A minor program participant, who reaches 18 years of age during his or her enrollment, may renew as an adult following the renewal procedures established by the Secretary of State.
(d) Upon certification, the Secretary of State shall, within 10 days, notify the other parent or parents identified pursuant to paragraph (4) of subdivision (a) of the designation of the Secretary of State as agent for purposes of service of process and, unless there is a court order prohibiting contact, the address designated by the Secretary of State for the program participant. The notice shall be given by mail, return receipt requested, postage prepaid, to the last known address of the other parent to be notified. A copy shall also be sent to that parent’s counsel of record, if provided to the Secretary of State by the applicant.
(e) A person who falsely attests in an application that disclosure of the applicant’s address would endanger the applicant’s safety or the safety of the applicant’s children or household members, or the minor or incapacitated person on whose behalf the application is made, or who knowingly provides false or incorrect information upon making an application, is guilty of a misdemeanor. A notice shall be printed in bold type and in a conspicuous location on the face of the application informing the applicant of the penalties under this subdivision.

SEC. 4.

 Section 6206.7 of the Government Code is amended to read:

6206.7.
 (a) A program participant may withdraw from program participation by submitting to the Secretary of State written notification of withdrawal and his or her current identification card. Certification shall be terminated on the date of receipt of this notification.
(b) The Secretary of State may terminate a program participant’s certification and invalidate his or her authorization card for any of the following reasons:
(1) The program participant’s certification term has expired and certification renewal has not been completed.
(2) The Secretary of State has determined that false information was used in the application process to qualify as a program participant or that participation in the program is being used as a subterfuge to avoid detection of illegal or criminal activity or apprehension by law enforcement.
(3) The program participant no longer resides at the most recent residential address provided to the Secretary of State, and has not provided at least seven days’ prior notice in writing of a change in address.
(4) A service of process document or mail forwarded to the program participant by the Secretary of State is returned as nondeliverable.
(5) The program participant obtains a legal name change and fails to notify the Secretary of State within seven days.
(6) The program participant, who reaches 18 years of age during his or her certification term, has not renewed his or her certification within 60 days of him or her reaching 18 years of age.
(c) The Secretary of State may refuse to renew a program participant’s certification if the adult program participant or the parent or guardian acting on behalf of a minor or incapacitated person has abandoned his or her domicile in this state.
(d) If intended termination is based on any of the reasons under subdivision (b) or (c), the Secretary of State shall send written notification of the intended termination to the program participant. The program participant shall have 30 days in which to appeal the intended termination under procedures developed by the Secretary of State.
(e) The Secretary of State shall notify in writing the county elections official and authorized personnel of the appropriate county clerk’s office, county recording office, and department of health state and local agencies of the program participant’s certification withdrawal, invalidation, expiration, or termination.
(f) Upon receipt of this termination notification, authorized personnel shall transmit to the Secretary of State all appropriate administrative records pertaining to the program participant and the record transmitting agency is no longer responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of a terminated program participant’s record.
(g) Following termination of program participant certification as a result of paragraph (2) of subdivision (b), the Secretary of State may disclose information contained in the participant’s application.

SEC. 4.SEC. 5.

 Section 6208.5 of the Government Code is amended to read:

6208.5.
 The Secretary of State shall designate state and local agencies and nonprofit agencies that provide counseling and shelter services to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking as well as agencies that serve victims of elder or dependent adult abuse pursuant to the Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act (Chapter 11 (commencing with Section 15600) of Part 3 of Division 9 of the Welfare and Institutions Code) to assist victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking applying to be program participants. The Secretary of State shall conduct outreach activities to identify and recruit the agencies. Any assistance and counseling rendered by the office of the Secretary of State or its designees to applicants shall in no way be construed as legal advice.

SEC. 5.SEC. 6.

 Section 6209.5 of the Government Code is amended to read:

6209.5.
 The Secretary of State shall provide each program participant a notice in clear and conspicuous font that contains all of the following information:
(a) The program participant is authorized by law to request to use his or her address designated by the Secretary of State on real property deeds, change of ownership forms, and deeds of trust when purchasing or selling a home.
(b) The program participant may create a revocable living trust and place his or her real property into the trust to protect his or her residential street address from disclosure in real property transactions.
(c) The program participant may obtain a change of his or her legal name to protect his or her anonymity.
(d) A list of contact information for entities that the program participant may contact to receive information on, or receive legal services for, the creation of a trust to hold real property or obtaining a name change, including county bar associations, legal aid societies, domestic violence prevention organizations, human trafficking prevention organizations, state and local agencies, or other nonprofit organizations that may be able to assist program participants.

SEC. 7.

 Section 6209.7 of the Government Code is amended to read:

6209.7.
 (a) Nothing in this chapter, nor participation in this program, affects custody or visitation orders in effect prior to or during program participation. A program participant who falsifies his or her location in order to unlawfully avoid custody or visitation orders is subject to immediate termination from the program and is guilty of a misdemeanor.
(b) Participation in the program does not constitute evidence of domestic violence or stalking violence, stalking, sexual assault, or human trafficking for purposes of making custody or visitation orders.

SEC. 6.SEC. 8.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution for certain costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district because, in that regard, this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.
However, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains other costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.