LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
SB 1136, Senators Huff and Mitchell. Foster care providers: criminal records.
Existing law requires the State Department of Social Services to license and regulate community care facilities, including foster family homes, certified family homes of licensed foster family agencies, and group homes. Existing law requires that persons providing care or services at these homes or facilities obtain either a criminal record clearance or an exemption from disqualification from the department, as prescribed.
Existing law authorizes a child welfare agency to secure from an appropriate governmental criminal justice agency the state summary criminal history information for specified purposes, including an assessment of the appropriateness of placing a child subject to the jurisdiction of the juvenile court with a relative or nonrelative extended family member. Existing law also requires the Department of Justice to provide information contained in the Child Abuse Central Index to the State Department of Social Services, or to any county licensing agency that has contracted with the state for the performance of licensing duties.
This bill would authorize the State Department of Social Services and county child welfare agencies to share information with respect to applicants, licensees, certificates, or individuals who have been the subject of any administrative action resulting in the denial, suspension, probation, or revocation of a license, permit, or certificate, or in the exclusion of a person from a facility who is subject to a background check.
The bill would require the State Department of Social Services to provide, upon the request of a county child welfare agency, a list of each person who has received a criminal records exemption related to a licensed or certified foster home, so that the county may assess the appropriateness of placing a child in the foster home with which the individual is associated. The bill would also authorize the department to share with the county child welfare agency summary information, as defined, related to a criminal record clearance or exemption granted by the department, except as otherwise limited by state or federal law. The bill would prohibit the department from disclosing the names of individuals who are not the subject of the exemption request or disclosing more information than is necessary, as determined by the department and in accordance with state and federal law, to assess the appropriateness of placing a child in a licensed or certified foster home. The bill would require the department to issue an all-county letter on or before March 1, 2015, that specifies the process by which a county may request summary information, how the information will be issued by the department, and how the information may be used by a county.
Vote Required: majority Appropriation: no Fiscal Committee: yes Local Program: no