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AB-465 Juveniles: dual status children.(2019-2020)



Current Version: 02/11/19 - Introduced        


AB465:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 465


Introduced by Assembly Member Eggman

February 11, 2019


An act to amend Sections 241.1 and 241.2 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to juveniles.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 465, as introduced, Eggman. Juveniles: dual status children.
Existing law establishes the jurisdiction of the juvenile court, which may adjudge a child to be a dependent of the court under certain circumstances, including when the child has suffered, or there is a substantial risk that the child will suffer, serious physical harm or illness, or a parent or guardian fails to adequately supervise or protect the child, as specified. Existing law generally subjects any person under 18 years of age who commits a crime or engages in certain noncriminal behavior, including, among other things, persistent or habitual truancy, to the jurisdiction of the juvenile court, which may adjudge the minor to be a ward of the court.
Existing law requires the probation department and child welfare service department in each county to jointly develop a written protocol, as specified, to ensure appropriate local coordination in the assessment of a minor who appears to come within the description of both a dependent child and a ward of the juvenile court. Existing law authorizes the departments to create a jointly written protocol to allow the departments to jointly assess and produce a recommendation that the child be designated as a dual status child, allowing the child to be simultaneously a dependent child and a ward of the court. Existing law requires the State Department of Social Services to issue instructions to all counties on how to completely and consistently track the involvement of these youth in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system.
This bill would define various terms, including, among others, “dual status youth” and “child welfare reentry,” for purposes of tracking the involvement of youth in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system. The bill would also state the intent of the Legislature to replace the term “delinquency” with “juvenile justice” in all parts of code that address child welfare and juvenile justice, and would make that change in provisions relating to dual status youth.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 It is the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would replace the term “delinquency” with “juvenile justice” in all statutes that address child welfare and juvenile justice.

SEC. 2.

 Section 241.1 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

241.1.
 (a) Whenever a minor appears to come within the description of both Section 300 and Section 601 or 602, the county probation department and the child welfare services department shall, pursuant to a jointly developed written protocol described in subdivision (b), initially determine which status will serve the best interests of the minor and the protection of society. The recommendations of both departments shall be presented to the juvenile court with the petition that is filed on behalf of the minor, and the court shall determine which status is appropriate for the minor. Any other juvenile court having jurisdiction over the minor shall receive notice from the court, within five calendar days, of the presentation of the recommendations of the departments. The notice shall include the name of the judge to whom, or the courtroom to which, the recommendations were presented.
(b) (1) The probation department and the child welfare services department in each county shall jointly develop a written protocol to ensure appropriate local coordination in the assessment of a minor described in subdivision (a), and the development of recommendations by these departments for consideration by the juvenile court.
(2) These protocols shall require, but not be limited to, consideration of the nature of the referral, the age of the minor, the prior record of the minor’s parents for child abuse, the prior record of the minor for out-of-control or delinquent behavior, the parents’ cooperation with the minor’s school, the minor’s functioning at school, the nature of the minor’s home environment, and the records of other agencies that have been involved with the minor and his or her the minor’s family. The protocols also shall contain provisions for resolution of disagreements between the probation and child welfare services departments regarding the need for dependency or ward status and provisions for determining the circumstances under which filing a new petition is required to change the minor’s status.
(3) (A) These protocols may also require immediate notification of the child welfare services department and the minor’s dependency attorney upon referral of a dependent minor to probation, procedures for release to, and placement by, the child welfare services department pending resolution of the determination pursuant to this section, timelines for dependents in secure custody to ensure timely resolution of the determination pursuant to this section for detained dependents, and nondiscrimination provisions to ensure that dependents are provided with any option that would otherwise be available to a nondependent minor.
(B) If the alleged conduct that appears to bring a dependent minor within the description of Section 601 or 602 occurs in, or under the supervision of, a foster home, group home, or other licensed facility that provides residential care for minors, the county probation department and the child welfare services department may consider whether the alleged conduct was within the scope of behaviors to be managed or treated by the foster home or facility, as identified in the minor’s case plan, needs and services plan, placement agreement, facility plan of operation, or facility emergency intervention plan, in determining which status will serve the best interests of the minor and the protection of society pursuant to subdivision (a).
(4) The protocols shall contain all of the following processes:
(A) A process for determining which agency and court shall supervise a child whose jurisdiction is modified from delinquency juvenile justice jurisdiction to dependency jurisdiction pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (b) of Section 607.2 or subdivision (i) of Section 727.2.
(B) A process for determining which agency and court shall supervise a nonminor dependent under the transition jurisdiction of the juvenile court.
(C) A process that specifically addresses the manner in which supervision responsibility is determined when a nonminor dependent becomes subject to adult probation supervision.
(c) Whenever a minor who is under the jurisdiction of the juvenile court of a county pursuant to Section 300, 601, or 602 is alleged to come within the description of Section 300, 601, or 602 by another county, the county probation department or child welfare services department in the county that has jurisdiction under Section 300, 601, or 602 and the county probation department or child welfare services department of the county alleging the minor to be within one of those sections shall initially determine which status will best serve the best interests of the minor and the protection of society. The recommendations of both departments shall be presented to the juvenile court in which the petition is filed on behalf of the minor, and the court shall determine which status is appropriate for the minor. In making their recommendation to the juvenile court, the departments shall conduct an assessment consistent with the requirements of subdivision (b). Any other juvenile court having jurisdiction over the minor shall receive notice from the court in which the petition is filed within five calendar days of the presentation of the recommendations of the departments. The notice shall include the name of the judge to whom, or the courtroom to which, the recommendations were presented.
(d) Except as provided in subdivision (e), this section shall not authorize the filing of a petition or petitions, or the entry of an order by the juvenile court, to make a minor simultaneously both a dependent child and a ward of the court.
(e) Notwithstanding subdivision (d), the probation department and the child welfare services department, in consultation with the presiding judge of the juvenile court, in any county may create a jointly written protocol to allow the county probation department and the child welfare services department to jointly assess and produce a recommendation that the child be designated as a dual status child, allowing the child to be simultaneously a dependent child and a ward of the court. This protocol shall be signed by the chief probation officer, the director of the county social services agency, and the presiding judge of the juvenile court prior to its implementation. A juvenile court shall not order that a child is simultaneously a dependent child and a ward of the court pursuant to this subdivision unless and until the required protocol has been created and entered into. This protocol shall include all of the following:
(1) A description of the process to be used to determine whether the child is eligible to be designated as a dual status child.
(2) A description of the procedure by which the probation department and the child welfare services department will assess the necessity for dual status for specified children and the process to make joint recommendations for the court’s consideration prior to making a determination under this section. These recommendations shall ensure a seamless transition from wardship to dependency jurisdiction, as appropriate, so that services to the child are not disrupted upon termination of the wardship.
(3) A provision for ensuring communication between the judges who hear petitions concerning children for whom dependency jurisdiction has been suspended while they are within the jurisdiction of the juvenile court pursuant to Section 601 or 602. A judge may communicate by providing a copy of any reports filed pursuant to Section 727.2 concerning a ward to a court that has jurisdiction over dependency proceedings concerning the child.
(4) A plan to collect data in order to evaluate the protocol pursuant to Section 241.2.
(5) Counties that exercise the option provided for in this subdivision shall adopt either an “on-hold” system system, as described in subparagraph (A) (A), or a “lead court/lead agency” system system, as described in subparagraph (B). There shall not be any simultaneous or duplicative case management or services provided by both the county probation department and the child welfare services department. It is the intent of the Legislature that judges, in cases in which more than one judge is involved, shall not issue conflicting orders.
(A) In counties in which an on-hold system is adopted, the dependency jurisdiction shall be suspended or put on hold while the child is subject to jurisdiction as a ward of the court. When it appears that termination of the court’s jurisdiction, as established pursuant to Section 601 or 602, is likely and that reunification of the child with his or her the child’s parent or guardian would be detrimental to the child, the county probation department and the child welfare services department shall jointly assess and produce a recommendation for the court regarding whether the court’s dependency jurisdiction shall be resumed.
(B) In counties in which a lead court/lead agency system is adopted, the protocol shall include a method for identifying which court or agency will be the lead court/lead agency. That court or agency shall be responsible for case management, conducting statutorily mandated court hearings, and submitting court reports.
(f) Whenever the court determines pursuant to this section or Section 607.2 or 727.2 that it is necessary to modify the court’s jurisdiction over a dependent or ward who was removed from his or her their parent or guardian and placed in foster care, the court shall ensure that all of the following conditions are met:
(1) The petition under which jurisdiction was taken at the time the dependent or ward was originally removed is not dismissed until the new petition has been sustained.
(2) The order modifying the court’s jurisdiction contains all of the following provisions:
(A) Reference to the original removal findings and a statement that findings that continuation in the home is contrary to the child’s welfare, and that reasonable efforts were made to prevent removal, remain in effect.
(B) A statement that the child continues to be removed from the parent or guardian from whom the child was removed under the original petition.
(C) Identification of the agency that is responsible for placement and care of the child based upon the modification of jurisdiction.

SEC. 3.

 Section 241.2 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:
241.2.

(a)The Judicial Council shall convene a committee comprised of stakeholders involved in serving the needs of dependents or wards of the juvenile court, including, but not limited to, judges, probation officers, social workers, youth involved in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system, child welfare and juvenile justice attorneys, child welfare and juvenile justice advocates, education officials, and representatives from the State Department of Social Services, county child welfare agencies, and county probation departments. By January 1, 2018, the committee shall develop and report to the Legislature, pursuant to Section 9795 of the Government Code, its recommendations to facilitate and enhance comprehensive data and outcome tracking for the state’s youth involved in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system. The committee’s recommendations shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:

(1)A common identifier for counties to use to reconcile data across child welfare and juvenile justice systems statewide.

(2)Standardized definitions for terms related to the populations of youth involved in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system.

(3)Identified and defined outcomes for counties to track youth involved in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system, including, but not limited to, outcomes related to recidivism, health, pregnancy, homelessness, employment, and education.

(4)Established baselines and goals for the identified and defined outcomes specified in paragraph (3).

(5)An assessment as to the costs and benefits associated with requiring all counties to implement the committee’s recommendations.

(6)An assessment of whether a single technology system, including, but not limited to, the State Department of Social Services’ Child Welfare Services/Case Management System (CWS/CMS) or the Child Welfare Services-New System (CWS-NS), is needed to track youth in the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system.

(b)

241.2.
 (a) The State Department of Social Services shall, on or before January 1, 2019, implement a function within the applicable case management system that will enable county child welfare agencies and county probation departments to identify youth involved in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system who are within their counties and shall issue instructions to all counties on how to completely and consistently track the involvement of these youth in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system.
(b) For purposes of tracking the involvement of youth in both the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) “AWOL” means an instance when a child absconds from a court-ordered placement without permission, resulting in the issuance of a protective custody warrant.
(2) “Child welfare history” means any prior referral that was actively investigated and found to be substantiated, unfounded, or inconclusive, and any previously open child welfare case.
(3) “Child welfare crossover youth” means a youth whose child welfare case has been terminated in favor of a juvenile justice finding and wardship disposition.
(4) “Child welfare redetention” means a child’s removal from a parent following reunification and family maintenance, prior to case dismissal.
(5) “Child welfare reentry” means a child’s return to foster care after a child welfare case dismissal.
(6) “Couch surfing” means moving frequently between temporary living arrangements with local households, including, but not limited to, households of extended family, friends, friends’ parents, and acquaintances, while lacking a permanent or stable home.
(7) “Diversion” means suspension of any formal juvenile justice proceedings and either a dismissal of the petition or an informal agreement of participation of the youth and family in services designed to avoid system penetration.
(8) “Dual status youth” means a youth simultaneously declared a dependent and ward of the juvenile court.
(9) “Dually identified youth” means a youth with historical contact in one system and current contact with the other. For purposes of this paragraph, “contact” is used broadly, meaning any level of involvement with the system, including child welfare investigations or juvenile justice referrals.
(10) “Dually involved youth” means a youth who is currently a child welfare or juvenile justice youth and has formal or informal action, pending or active, through child welfare, probation, or the respective court.
(11) “Homeless” means couch surfing or sleeping on the street or in a vehicle, a shelter, or other temporary accommodations without a permanent residence to which a person can return.
(12) “Informal child welfare services” means any referrals to community-based services provided to families who come to the attention of child welfare services, but do not meet statutory criteria for formal intervention.
(13) “Informal probation” means a status of probation when a youth has been diverted from formal wardship status.
(14) “Juvenile justice crossover youth” means a youth whose juvenile justice case has been terminated in favor of a child welfare finding.
(15) “Permanency” means that a child achieves reunification with a parent, legal guardianship, adoption, or customary adoption for tribal youth.
(16) “Recidivism” means any criminal or juvenile justice dispositions made within three years of a previous juvenile justice disposition.
(17) “Runaway” means leaving home without permission from the parents, probation department, or child welfare department.
(18) “Voluntary services” means services provided to families in lieu of filing a petition or subsequent to dismissal of a petition already filed, with the consent of the family.