Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

File No. 26

    February Session, 2016

Senate Bill No. 72

Senate, March 10, 2016

The Committee on Children reported through SEN. BARTOLOMEO of the 13th Dist., Chairperson of the Committee on the part of the Senate, that the bill ought to pass.

AN ACT CONCERNING A NOTIFICATION OF SUPPORT FOR FOSTER PARENTS AND RELATIVE CAREGIVERS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2016) (a) Not later than January 1, 2017, the Department of Children and Families shall develop a notification of support to inform foster parents and relative caregivers of their privileges under various state programs. On and after January 1, 2017, the department shall provide a copy of the notification of support to foster parents and relative caregivers at the time of the placement of a child with the foster parent or relative caregiver and upon request of a foster parent or relative caregiver.

(b) The notification of support shall include, but need not be limited to, information regarding:

(1) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to be a member of the child's placement and treatment teams and to be notified of and included in meetings scheduled by the department concerning the child;

(2) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to communicate with the child's social worker to share information regarding the child's domestic, social, educational, medical and mental health needs;

(3) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to be timely notified of all court hearings and administrative case review meetings including, but not limited to, permanency hearings and hearings on motions to revoke commitment concerning a child in the care of the foster parent or relative caregiver;

(4) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to be provided with information, support and guidance from professional service providers, including, but not limited to, referrals to other professionals regarding the child and assistance in identifying and obtaining services for a child in the care of the foster parent or relative caregiver;

(5) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to receive open and timely responses to requests for information or services that are relevant to the care of a child in the care of the foster parent or relative caregiver, including, but not limited to, access to a regional office on-call system and careline numbers to enable the foster parent or relative caregiver to contact professional staff after normal business hours;

(6) For a foster parent or relative caregiver who accepts an emergency placement, the foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to be provided with information to meet the child's immediate needs not later than twenty-four hours after the time the child is placed or, if such information about the child is not available at the time of placement, not later than thirty days after the date of placement;

(7) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to have access to records pertaining to the domestic, social, educational, medical and mental health needs of a child placed or being considered for placement with such foster parent or relative caregiver, provided no information identifying the child's birth parents shall be disclosed without such birth parents' permission;

(8) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to be provided information concerning the department's policies regarding the role and responsibilities of a foster parent or relative caregiver;

(9) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to be provided appropriate training and support to enhance the parent's or caregiver's relevant skills in order to meet any post-licensing training requirements;

(10) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to express concerns about a child's treatment plan, advocate for services on behalf of a child, refuse to accept a child for placement, request removal of a child for good cause or communicate with a child's former foster parent, prospective adoptive parent, relative caregiver or birth parent without risk of retaliation by the department;

(11) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to seek assistance regarding the problem resolution process through the department's chain of command as described in the department's Foster Parent and Adoptive Parent Handbook; and

(12) The foster parent's and relative caregiver's privilege to be provided with a copy of the notification of support upon a child's placement with the foster parent or relative caregiver and at any time thereafter upon request of the foster parent or relative caregiver pursuant to subsection (a) of this section.

(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed as creating or permitting a cause of action for a violation of any provision of this section.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

October 1, 2016

New section

KID

Joint Favorable

 

The following Fiscal Impact Statement and Bill Analysis are prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for purposes of information, summarization and explanation and do not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose. In general, fiscal impacts are based upon a variety of informational sources, including the analyst's professional knowledge. Whenever applicable, agency data is consulted as part of the analysis, however final products do not necessarily reflect an assessment from any specific department.

OFA Fiscal Note

State Impact:

Agency Affected

Fund-Effect

FY 17 $

FY 18 $

Children & Families, Dept.

GF - Cost

approx. 500

approx. 500

Note: GF=General Fund

Municipal Impact: None

Explanation

The bill results in an annual cost of approximately $500 to the Department of Children and Families (DCF), associated with providing a notification of privileges to foster parents/relative caregivers when a child is placed with them, or upon request. There were 3,292 foster parents and relative caregivers as of January 2016. An expenditure assumption of $0.15 per document, per parent/caregiver, results in a cost of $494. While some individuals will allow this document to be emailed to them at no cost to the agency, the fiscal impact of approximately $500 remains in order to account for duplicative copies provided by DCF upon request.

The Out Years

The annualized ongoing fiscal impact identified above would continue into the future subject to the number of foster parents and relative caregivers, and inflation.

Sources:

Department of Children and Families' January Comprehensive Financial Status Report

OLR Bill Analysis

SB 72

AN ACT CONCERNING A NOTIFICATION OF SUPPORT FOR FOSTER PARENTS AND RELATIVE CAREGIVERS.

SUMMARY:

This bill requires the Department of Children and Families (DCF), by January 1, 2017, to develop a form informing foster parents and relative caregivers of the support they may receive from the department. Starting January 1, 2017, the department must provide the form to foster parents and relative caregivers when it places a child with them and on request. The bill does not create or permit a cause of action for a violation of any of its provisions.

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2016

NOTIFICATION OF SUPPORT

The DCF form (“notification of support”) must inform foster parents and relative caregivers of the following support and services they may receive from DCF, as well as actions they may take as parents and relative caregivers, with regard to children in their care. These include, to:

COMMITTEE ACTION

Committee on Children

Joint Favorable

Yea

11

Nay

0

(02/25/2016)

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