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HF 3265

3rd Engrossment - 90th Legislature (2017 - 2018) Posted on 05/24/2018 12:28pm

KEY: stricken = removed, old language. underscored = added, new language.



Version List Authors and Status

Current Version - 3rd Engrossment

A bill for an act
relating to human services; modifying provisions governing MAPCY and child
foster care; establishing foster care sibling bill of rights;amending Minnesota
Statutes 2016, sections 245A.175; 256N.24, by adding a subdivision; proposing
coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 260C.


Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 245A.175, is amended to read:


Prior to a nonemergency placement of a child in a foster care home, the child foster care
license holder and caregivers in foster family and treatment foster care settings, and all staff
providing care in foster residence settings must complete two hours of training that addresses
the causes, symptoms, and key warning signs of mental health disorders; cultural
considerations; and effective approaches for dealing with a child's behaviors. At least one
hour of the annual training requirement for the foster family license holder and caregivers,
and foster residence staff must be on children's mental health issues and treatment. Except
for providers and services under chapter 245D,
the annual training must also include at least
one hour of training on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders within the first 12 months of
licensure. After the first 12 months of licensure, training on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders
may count
, which must be counted toward the 12 hours of required in-service training per
year. Short-term substitute caregivers are exempt from these requirements. Training
curriculum shall be approved by the commissioner of human services.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 256N.24, is amended by adding a subdivision to

Subd. 2a.

Minnesota assessment of parenting for children and youth (MAPCY)

The commissioner, in consultation with representatives from communities of
color, including but not limited to advisory councils and ombudspersons, shall review and
revise the MAPCY tool and incorporate changes that take into consideration different
cultures and the diverse needs of communities of color.

Sec. 3.


Subdivision 1.

Statement of rights.

(a) A child placed in foster care who has a sibling
has the right to:

(1) be placed in foster care homes with the child's siblings, when possible and when it
is in the best interest of each sibling, in order to sustain family relationships;

(2) be placed in close geographical distance to the child's siblings, if placement together
is not possible, to facilitate frequent and meaningful contact;

(3) have frequent contact with the child's siblings in foster care and, whenever possible,
with the child's siblings who are not in foster care, unless the responsible social services
agency has documented that contact is not in the best interest of any sibling. Contact includes,
but is not limited to, telephone calls, text messaging, social media and other Internet use,
and video calls;

(4) annually receive a telephone number, address, and e-mail address for all siblings in
foster care, and receive updated photographs of siblings regularly, by regular mail or e-mail;

(5) participate in regular face-to-face visits with the child's siblings in foster care and,
whenever possible, with the child's siblings who are not in foster care. Participation in these
visits shall not be withheld or restricted as a consequence for behavior, and shall only be
restricted if the responsible social services agency documents that the visits are contrary to
the safety or well-being of any sibling. Social workers, parents, foster care providers, and
older children must cooperate to ensure regular visits and must coordinate dates, times,
transportation, and other accommodations as necessary. The timing and regularity of visits
shall be outlined in each sibling's service plan, based on the individual circumstances and
needs of each child. A social worker need not give explicit permission for each visit or
possible overnight visit, but foster care providers shall communicate with social workers
about these visits;

(6) be actively involved in each other's lives and share celebrations, if they choose to
do so, including but not limited to birthdays, holidays, graduations, school and extracurricular
activities, cultural customs in the siblings' native language, and other milestones;

(7) be promptly informed about changes in sibling placements or circumstances, including
but not limited to new placements, discharge from placements, significant life events, and
discharge from foster care;

(8) be included in permanency planning decisions for siblings, if appropriate; and

(9) be informed of the expectations for and possibility of continued contact with a sibling
after an adoption or transfer of permanent physical and legal custody to a relative.

(b) Adult siblings of children in foster care shall have the right to be considered as foster
care providers, adoptive parents, and relative custodians for their siblings, if they choose
to do so.

Subd. 2.


The rights under this section are established for the benefit of
siblings in foster care. This statement of rights does not replace or diminish other rights,
liberties, and responsibilities that may exist relative to children in foster care, adult siblings
of children in foster care, foster care providers, parents, relatives, or responsible social
services agencies.

Subd. 3.


Child welfare agency staff shall provide a copy of these rights to
a child who has a sibling at the time the child enters foster care, to any adult siblings of a
child entering foster care, if known, and to the foster care provider, in a format specified
by the commissioner of human services. The copy shall contain the address and telephone
number of the Office of Ombudsman for Families and a brief statement describing how to
file a complaint with the office.


This section is effective for children entering foster care on or
after August 1, 2018. Subdivision 3 is effective August 1, 2018, and applies to all children
in foster care on that date, regardless of when the child entered foster care.

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