Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

HF 8

as introduced - 89th Legislature (2015 - 2016) Posted on 01/12/2015 09:20am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.
Line numbers 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4
1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 1.24 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 2.10
2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 2.21 2.22 2.23 2.24 2.25 2.26 2.27 2.28 2.29 2.30 2.31 2.32 2.33 2.34 2.35 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 3.9 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16 3.17 3.18 3.19 3.20 3.21 3.22 3.23 3.24 3.25 3.26 3.27 3.28 3.29 3.30 3.31 3.32 3.33 3.34 3.35 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9 4.10 4.11 4.12 4.13 4.14 4.15 4.16 4.17 4.18 4.19 4.20 4.21 4.22 4.23 4.24 4.25 4.26 4.27 4.28 4.29 4.30 4.31 4.32 4.33 4.34 4.35 4.36 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.8 5.9 5.10 5.11 5.12 5.13 5.14 5.15 5.16 5.17 5.18 5.19 5.20 5.21 5.22 5.23 5.24 5.25 5.26 5.27 5.28 5.29 5.30 5.31 5.32 5.33 5.34 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 6.8 6.9 6.10 6.11 6.12 6.13 6.14 6.15 6.16 6.17 6.18 6.19 6.20 6.21 6.22 6.23 6.24 6.25 6.26 6.27 6.28 6.29 6.30 6.31 6.32 6.33 6.34 6.35 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 7.8 7.9 7.10 7.11 7.12 7.13 7.14 7.15 7.16 7.17 7.18 7.19 7.20 7.21 7.22 7.23 7.24 7.25 7.26 7.27 7.28 7.29 7.30 7.31 7.32 7.33 7.34 7.35 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 8.8 8.9 8.10
8.11 8.12 8.13 8.14 8.15 8.16 8.17 8.18 8.19 8.20 8.21 8.22 8.23 8.24 8.25 8.26 8.27 8.28 8.29 8.30 8.31 8.32 8.33 8.34 8.35 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 9.6 9.7 9.8 9.9 9.10 9.11 9.12 9.13 9.14 9.15 9.16 9.17 9.18 9.19 9.20 9.21 9.22 9.23 9.24 9.25 9.26 9.27 9.28 9.29 9.30 9.31
9.32 9.33 9.34 9.35 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 10.6 10.7 10.8
10.9 10.10 10.11 10.12 10.13 10.14 10.15 10.16 10.17 10.18 10.19 10.20 10.21 10.22 10.23 10.24 10.25 10.26 10.27 10.28 10.29 10.30 10.31 10.32 10.33 10.34 11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 11.5 11.6 11.7 11.8 11.9 11.10 11.11 11.12 11.13 11.14 11.15 11.16 11.17
11.18 11.19 11.20 11.21 11.22 11.23 11.24 11.25 11.26 11.27 11.28 11.29 11.30 11.31 11.32 11.33 11.34 11.35 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 12.6 12.7 12.8 12.9 12.10 12.11 12.12 12.13 12.14 12.15 12.16 12.17 12.18 12.19 12.20 12.21 12.22 12.23 12.24 12.25 12.26 12.27 12.28 12.29 12.30 12.31 12.32 12.33 12.34 12.35 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 13.5 13.6 13.7 13.8 13.9 13.10 13.11 13.12 13.13 13.14 13.15 13.16 13.17 13.18 13.19 13.20 13.21 13.22 13.23 13.24 13.25 13.26 13.27 13.28 13.29 13.30 13.31 13.32 13.33 13.34 13.35 13.36 14.1 14.2 14.3 14.4 14.5 14.6 14.7 14.8 14.9 14.10 14.11 14.12 14.13 14.14 14.15 14.16 14.17 14.18 14.19 14.20 14.21 14.22 14.23 14.24 14.25 14.26 14.27 14.28 14.29 14.30 14.31 14.32 14.33 14.34 14.35 14.36 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.5 15.6 15.7 15.8 15.9 15.10 15.11 15.12 15.13 15.14 15.15 15.16 15.17 15.18 15.19 15.20 15.21 15.22 15.23 15.24 15.25 15.26 15.27 15.28 15.29 15.30 15.31 15.32 15.33 15.34 15.35 16.1 16.2 16.3 16.4 16.5 16.6 16.7 16.8 16.9 16.10 16.11 16.12 16.13 16.14 16.15 16.16 16.17 16.18 16.19 16.20 16.21 16.22 16.23 16.24 16.25 16.26 16.27 16.28 16.29 16.30 16.31 16.32 16.33 16.34 16.35 17.1 17.2 17.3 17.4 17.5 17.6 17.7 17.8 17.9 17.10 17.11 17.12 17.13 17.14
17.15 17.16 17.17 17.18 17.19 17.20 17.21 17.22 17.23 17.24 17.25 17.26 17.27 17.28 17.29 17.30 17.31 17.32 17.33 17.34 17.35 18.1 18.2 18.3 18.4 18.5 18.6 18.7 18.8 18.9 18.10 18.11
18.12 18.13 18.14 18.15 18.16 18.17 18.18 18.19 18.20 18.21 18.22 18.23

A bill for an act
relating to human services; updating child protection provisions; amending
Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivisions 1, 2, 3, 6a, 7, 10, 11c.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Public policy.

new text begin(a) new text endThe legislature hereby declares that the public
policy of this state is to protect children whose health or welfare may be jeopardized
through physical abuse, neglect, or sexual abuse. While it is recognized that most parents
want to keep their children safe, sometimes circumstances or conditions interfere with their
ability to do so. When this occurs, deleted text beginfamilies are best served by interventions that engage
their protective capacities and address immediate safety concerns and ongoing risks of
child maltreatment
deleted text endnew text begin the health and safety of the children shall be of paramount concernnew text end.new text begin
Intervention and prevention efforts shall address immediate concerns for child safety and
the ongoing risk of abuse or neglect and should engage the protective capacities of families.
new text end
In furtherance of this public policy, it is the intent of the legislature under this section tonew text begin:new text end

new text begin (1) protect children and promote child safety;
new text end

new text begin (2) new text endstrengthen the family deleted text beginanddeleted text endnew text begin;
new text end

new text begin (3)new text end make the home, school, and community safe for children by promoting
responsible child care in all settings; and deleted text beginto
deleted text end

new text begin (4)new text end provide, when necessary, a safe temporary or permanent home environment for
physically or sexually abused or neglected children.

new text begin (b) new text endIn addition, it is the policy of this state tonew text begin:
new text end

new text begin (1)new text end require the reporting of neglectdeleted text begin,deleted text endnew text begin ornew text end physical or sexual abuse of children in the
home, school, and community settings; deleted text beginto
deleted text end

new text begin (2)new text end provide for the voluntary reporting of abuse or neglect of children; deleted text beginto require
a family assessment, when appropriate, as the preferred response to reports not alleging
substantial child endangerment; to
deleted text end

new text begin (3)new text end require an investigation when the report alleges deleted text beginsubstantial child endangermentdeleted text endnew text begin
physical or sexual abuse or neglect of a child
new text end;

new text begin (4) provide a family assessment for those families whose children are determined to
be at low risk of abuse or neglect and for whom there are no immediate safety concerns;
new text endand deleted text beginto
deleted text end

new text begin (5)new text end provide protective, family support, and family preservation services when
needed in appropriate cases.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivision 2, is amended to read:


Subd. 2.

Definitions.

As used in this section, the following terms have the meanings
given them unless the specific content indicates otherwise:

(a) "Family assessment" means a comprehensive assessment of child safety, risk
of subsequent child maltreatment, and family strengths and needs that is applied to a
child maltreatment report that does not allege substantial child endangerment. Family
assessment does not include a determination as to whether child maltreatment occurred
but does determine the need for services to address the safety of family members and the
risk of subsequent maltreatment.

(b) "Investigation" means fact gathering related to the current safety of a child
and the risk of subsequent maltreatment that determines whether child maltreatment
occurred and whether child protective services are needed. An investigation must be used
when reports involve substantial child endangerment, and for reports of maltreatment in
facilities required to be licensed under chapter 245A or 245D; under sections 144.50 to
144.58 and 241.021; in a school as defined in sections 120A.05, subdivisions 9, 11, and
13, and 124D.10; or in a nonlicensed personal care provider association as defined in
section 256B.0625, subdivision 19a.

(c) "Substantial child endangerment" means a person responsible for a child's care,
and in the case of sexual abuse includes a person who has a significant relationship to the
child as defined in section 609.341, or a person in a position of authority as defined in
section 609.341, who by act or omission commits or attempts to commit an act against a
child under their care that constitutes any of the following:

(1) egregious harm as defined in section 260C.007, subdivision 14;

(2) sexual abuse as defined in paragraph (d);

(3) abandonment under section 260C.301, subdivision 2;

(4) neglect as defined in paragraph (f), clause (2), that substantially endangers the
child's physical or mental health, including a growth delay, which may be referred to as
failure to thrive, that has been diagnosed by a physician and is due to parental neglect;

(5) murder in the first, second, or third degree under section 609.185, 609.19, or
609.195;

(6) manslaughter in the first or second degree under section 609.20 or 609.205;

(7) assault in the first, second, or third degree under section 609.221, 609.222, or
609.223;

(8) solicitation, inducement, and promotion of prostitution under section 609.322;

(9) criminal sexual conduct under sections 609.342 to 609.3451;

(10) solicitation of children to engage in sexual conduct under section 609.352;

(11) malicious punishment or neglect or endangerment of a child under section
609.377 or 609.378;

(12) use of a minor in sexual performance under section 617.246; or

(13) parental behavior, status, or condition which mandates that the county attorney
file a termination of parental rights petition under section 260C.503, subdivision 2.

(d) "Sexual abuse" means the subjection of a child by a person responsible for the
child's care, by a person who has a significant relationship to the child, as defined in
section 609.341, or by a person in a position of authority, as defined in section 609.341,
subdivision 10, to any act which constitutes a violation of section 609.342 (criminal sexual
conduct in the first degree), 609.343 (criminal sexual conduct in the second degree),
609.344 (criminal sexual conduct in the third degree), 609.345 (criminal sexual conduct
in the fourth degree), or 609.3451 (criminal sexual conduct in the fifth degree). Sexual
abuse also includes any act which involves a minor which constitutes a violation of
prostitution offenses under sections 609.321 to 609.324 or 617.246. Sexual abuse includes
threatened sexual abuse which includes the status of a parent or household member
who has committed a violation which requires registration as an offender under section
243.166, subdivision 1b, paragraph (a) or (b), or required registration under section
243.166, subdivision 1b, paragraph (a) or (b).

(e) "Person responsible for the child's care" means (1) an individual functioning
within the family unit and having responsibilities for the care of the child such as a
parent, guardian, or other person having similar care responsibilities, or (2) an individual
functioning outside the family unit and having responsibilities for the care of the child
such as a teacher, school administrator, other school employees or agents, or other lawful
custodian of a child having either full-time or short-term care responsibilities including,
but not limited to, day care, babysitting whether paid or unpaid, counseling, teaching,
and coaching.

(f) "Neglect" means the commission or omission of any of the acts specified under
clauses (1) to (9), other than by accidental means:

(1) failure by a person responsible for a child's care to supply a child with necessary
food, clothing, shelter, health, medical, or other care required for the child's physical or
mental health when reasonably able to do so;

(2) failure to protect a child from conditions or actions that seriously endanger the
child's physical or mental health when reasonably able to do so, including a growth delay,
which may be referred to as a failure to thrive, that has been diagnosed by a physician and
is due to parental neglect;

(3) failure to provide for necessary supervision or child care arrangements
appropriate for a child after considering factors as the child's age, mental ability, physical
condition, length of absence, or environment, when the child is unable to care for the
child's own basic needs or safety, or the basic needs or safety of another child in their care;

(4) failure to ensure that the child is educated as defined in sections 120A.22 and
260C.163, subdivision 11, which does not include a parent's refusal to provide the parent's
child with sympathomimetic medications, consistent with section 125A.091, subdivision 5;

(5) nothing in this section shall be construed to mean that a child is neglected solely
because the child's parent, guardian, or other person responsible for the child's care in
good faith selects and depends upon spiritual means or prayer for treatment or care of
disease or remedial care of the child in lieu of medical care; except that a parent, guardian,
or caretaker, or a person mandated to report pursuant to subdivision 3, has a duty to report
if a lack of medical care may cause serious danger to the child's health. This section does
not impose upon persons, not otherwise legally responsible for providing a child with
necessary food, clothing, shelter, education, or medical care, a duty to provide that care;

(6) prenatal exposure to a controlled substance, as defined in section 253B.02,
subdivision 2, used by the mother for a nonmedical purpose, as evidenced by withdrawal
symptoms in the child at birth, results of a toxicology test performed on the mother at
delivery or the child at birth, medical effects or developmental delays during the child's
first year of life that medically indicate prenatal exposure to a controlled substance, or the
presence of a fetal alcohol spectrum disorder;

(7) "medical neglect" as defined in section 260C.007, subdivision 6, clause (5);

(8) chronic and severe use of alcohol or a controlled substance by a parent or
person responsible for the care of the child that adversely affects the child's basic needs
and safety; or

(9) emotional harm from a pattern of behavior which contributes to impaired
emotional functioning of the child which may be demonstrated by a substantial and
observable effect in the child's behavior, emotional response, or cognition that is not
within the normal range for the child's age and stage of development, with due regard to
the child's culture.

(g) "Physical abuse" means any physical injury, mental injury, or threatened injury,
inflicted by a person responsible for the child's care on a child other than by accidental
means, or any physical or mental injury that cannot reasonably be explained by the child's
history of injuries, or any aversive or deprivation procedures, or regulated interventions,
that have not been authorized under section 125A.0942 or 245.825.

Abuse does not include reasonable and moderate physical discipline of a child
administered by a parent or legal guardian which does not result in an injury. Abuse does
not include the use of reasonable force by a teacher, principal, or school employee as
allowed by section 121A.582. Actions which are not reasonable and moderate include,
but are not limited to, any of the following deleted text beginthat are done in anger or without regard to the
safety of the child
deleted text end:

(1) throwing, kicking, burning, biting, or cutting a child;

(2) striking a child with a closed fist;

(3) shaking a child under age three;

(4) striking or other actions which result in any nonaccidental injury to a child
under 18 months of age;

(5) unreasonable interference with a child's breathing;

(6) threatening a child with a weapon, as defined in section 609.02, subdivision 6;

(7) striking a child under age one on the face or head;

(8) purposely giving a child poison, alcohol, or dangerous, harmful, or controlled
substances which were not prescribed for the child by a practitioner, in order to control or
punish the child; or other substances that substantially affect the child's behavior, motor
coordination, or judgment or that results in sickness or internal injury, or subjects the
child to medical procedures that would be unnecessary if the child were not exposed
to the substances;

(9) unreasonable physical confinement or restraint not permitted under section
609.379, including but not limited to tying, caging, or chaining; or

(10) in a school facility or school zone, an act by a person responsible for the child's
care that is a violation under section 121A.58.

(h) "Report" means any report received by the local welfare agency, police
department, county sheriff, or agency responsible for assessing or investigating
maltreatment pursuant to this section.

(i) "Facility" means:

(1) a licensed or unlicensed day care facility, residential facility, agency, hospital,
sanitarium, or other facility or institution required to be licensed under sections 144.50 to
144.58, 241.021, or 245A.01 to 245A.16, or chapter 245D;

(2) a school as defined in sections 120A.05, subdivisions 9, 11, and 13; and
124D.10; or

(3) a nonlicensed personal care provider organization as defined in section
256B.0625, subdivision 19a.

(j) "Operator" means an operator or agency as defined in section 245A.02.

(k) "Commissioner" means the commissioner of human services.

(l) "Practice of social services," for the purposes of subdivision 3, includes but is
not limited to employee assistance counseling and the provision of guardian ad litem and
parenting time expeditor services.

(m) "Mental injury" means an injury to the psychological capacity or emotional
stability of a child as evidenced by an observable or substantial impairment in the child's
ability to function within a normal range of performance and behavior with due regard to
the child's culture.

(n) "Threatened injury" means a statement, overt act, condition, or status that
represents a substantial risk of physical or sexual abuse or mental injury. Threatened
injury includes, but is not limited to, exposing a child to a person responsible for the
child's care, as defined in paragraph (e), clause (1), who has:

(1) subjected a child to, or failed to protect a child from, an overt act or condition
that constitutes egregious harm, as defined in section 260C.007, subdivision 14, or a
similar law of another jurisdiction;

(2) been found to be palpably unfit under section 260C.301, subdivision 1, paragraph
(b), clause (4), or a similar law of another jurisdiction;

(3) committed an act that has resulted in an involuntary termination of parental rights
under section 260C.301, or a similar law of another jurisdiction; or

(4) committed an act that has resulted in the involuntary transfer of permanent
legal and physical custody of a child to a relative under Minnesota Statutes 2010, section
260C.201, subdivision 11, paragraph (d), clause (1), section 260C.515, subdivision 4, or a
similar law of another jurisdiction.

A child is the subject of a report of threatened injury when the responsible social
services agency receives birth match data under paragraph (o) from the Department of
Human Services.

(o) Upon receiving data under section 144.225, subdivision 2b, contained in a
birth record or recognition of parentage identifying a child who is subject to threatened
injury under paragraph (n), the Department of Human Services shall send the data to the
responsible social services agency. The data is known as "birth match" data. Unless the
responsible social services agency has already begun an investigation or assessment of the
report due to the birth of the child or execution of the recognition of parentage and the
parent's previous history with child protection, the agency shall accept the birth match
data as a report under this section. The agency may use either a family assessment or
investigation to determine whether the child is safe. All of the provisions of this section
apply. If the child is determined to be safe, the agency shall consult with the county
attorney to determine the appropriateness of filing a petition alleging the child is in need
of protection or services under section 260C.007, subdivision 6, clause (16), in order to
deliver needed services. If the child is determined not to be safe, the agency and the county
attorney shall take appropriate action as required under section 260C.503, subdivision 2.

(p) Persons who conduct assessments or investigations under this section shall take
into account accepted child-rearing practices of the culture in which a child participates
and accepted teacher discipline practices, which are not injurious to the child's health,
welfare, and safety.

(q) "Accidental" means a sudden, not reasonably foreseeable, and unexpected
occurrence or event which:

(1) is not likely to occur and could not have been prevented by exercise of due
care; and

(2) if occurring while a child is receiving services from a facility, happens when the
facility and the employee or person providing services in the facility are in compliance
with the laws and rules relevant to the occurrence or event.

(r) "Nonmaltreatment mistake" means:

(1) at the time of the incident, the individual was performing duties identified in the
center's child care program plan required under Minnesota Rules, part 9503.0045;

(2) the individual has not been determined responsible for a similar incident that
resulted in a finding of maltreatment for at least seven years;

(3) the individual has not been determined to have committed a similar
nonmaltreatment mistake under this paragraph for at least four years;

(4) any injury to a child resulting from the incident, if treated, is treated only with
remedies that are available over the counter, whether ordered by a medical professional or
not; and

(5) except for the period when the incident occurred, the facility and the individual
providing services were both in compliance with all licensing requirements relevant to the
incident.

This definition only applies to child care centers licensed under Minnesota
Rules, chapter 9503. If clauses (1) to (5) apply, rather than making a determination of
substantiated maltreatment by the individual, the commissioner of human services shall
determine that a nonmaltreatment mistake was made by the individual.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Persons mandated to report.

(a) A person who knows or has reason
to believe a child is being neglected or physically or sexually abused, as defined in
subdivision 2, or has been neglected or physically or sexually abused within the preceding
three years, shall immediately report the information to the local welfare agency, agency
responsible for assessing or investigating the report, police department, or the county
sheriff if the person is:

(1) a professional or professional's delegate who is engaged in the practice of
the healing arts, social services, hospital administration, psychological or psychiatric
treatment, child care, education, correctional supervision, probation and correctional
services, or law enforcement; or

(2) employed as a member of the clergy and received the information while
engaged in ministerial duties, provided that a member of the clergy is not required by
this subdivision to report information that is otherwise privileged under section 595.02,
subdivision 1
, paragraph (c).

The police department or the county sheriff, upon receiving a report, shall
immediately notify the local welfare agency or agency responsible for assessing or
investigating the report, orally and in writing. The local welfare agency, or agency
responsible for assessing or investigating the report, deleted text beginupon receiving a report,deleted text end shall
immediately notify the local police department or the county sheriff orally and in writingnew text begin
when a report is received, including reports that are not accepted for investigation or
assessment
new text end. The county sheriff and the head of every local welfare agency, agency
responsible for assessing or investigating reports, and police department shall each
designate a person within their agency, department, or office who is responsible for
ensuring that the notification duties of this paragraph and paragraph (b) are carried out.
Nothing in this subdivision shall be construed to require more than one report from any
institution, facility, school, or agency.

(b) Any person may voluntarily report to the local welfare agency, agency
responsible for assessing or investigating the report, police department, or the county
sheriff if the person knows, has reason to believe, or suspects a child is being or has been
neglected or subjected to physical or sexual abuse. The police department or the county
sheriff, upon receiving a report, shall immediately notify the local welfare agency or
agency responsible for assessing or investigating the report, orally and in writing. The
local welfare agency or agency responsible for assessing or investigating the reportdeleted text begin, upon
receiving a report,
deleted text end shall immediately notify the local police department or the county
sheriff orally and in writingnew text begin when a report is received, including reports that are not
accepted for investigation or assessment
new text end.

(c) A person mandated to report physical or sexual child abuse or neglect occurring
within a licensed facility shall report the information to the agency responsible for
licensing the facility under sections 144.50 to 144.58; 241.021; 245A.01 to 245A.16; or
chapter 245D; or a nonlicensed personal care provider organization as defined in section
256B.0625, subdivision 19. A health or corrections agency receiving a report may request
the local welfare agency to provide assistance pursuant to subdivisions 10, 10a, and 10b. A
board or other entity whose licensees perform work within a school facility, upon receiving
a complaint of alleged maltreatment, shall provide information about the circumstances of
the alleged maltreatment to the commissioner of education. Section 13.03, subdivision 4,
applies to data received by the commissioner of education from a licensing entity.

(d) Any person mandated to report shall receive a summary of the disposition of
any report made by that reporter, including whether the case has been opened for child
protection or other services, or if a referral has been made to a community organization,
unless release would be detrimental to the best interests of the child. Any person who is
not mandated to report shall, upon request to the local welfare agency, receive a concise
summary of the disposition of any report made by that reporter, unless release would be
detrimental to the best interests of the child.

(e) For purposes of this section, "immediately" means as soon as possible but in
no event longer than 24 hours.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivision 6a, is amended to read:


Subd. 6a.

Failure to notify.

If a local welfare agency receives a report under
subdivision deleted text begin3deleted text endnew text begin 10new text end, paragraph (a) deleted text beginor (b)deleted text end, and fails to notify the local police department or
county sheriff as required by subdivision deleted text begin3deleted text endnew text begin 10new text end, paragraph (a) deleted text beginor (b)deleted text end, the person within
the agency who is responsible for ensuring that notification is made shall be subject to
disciplinary action in keeping with the agency's existing policy or collective bargaining
agreement on discipline of employees. If a local police department or a county sheriff
receives a report under subdivision 3, paragraph (a) or (b), and fails to notify the local
welfare agency as required by subdivision 3, paragraph (a) or (b), the person within
the police department or county sheriff's office who is responsible for ensuring that
notification is made shall be subject to disciplinary action in keeping with the agency's
existing policy or collective bargaining agreement on discipline of employees.

Sec. 5.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivision 7, is amended to read:


Subd. 7.

Report; information provided to parent.

(a) An oral report shall be made
immediately by telephone or otherwise. An oral report made by a person required under
subdivision 3 to report shall be followed within 72 hours, exclusive of weekends and
holidays, by a report in writing to the appropriate police department, the county sheriff, the
agency responsible for assessing or investigating the report, or the local welfare agency.
The local welfare agency shall determine if the report is accepted for an assessment or
investigation as soon as possible but in no event longer than 24 hours after the report is
received.new text begin The local welfare agency shall immediately notify local law enforcement when
a report is received, including reports that are not accepted for investigation or assessment.
new text end

(b) Any report shall be of sufficient content to identify the child, any person believed
to be responsible for the abuse or neglect of the child if the person is known, the nature
and extent of the abuse or neglect and the name and address of the reporter. The local
welfare agency or agency responsible for assessing or investigating the report shall
accept a report made under subdivision 3 notwithstanding refusal by a reporter to provide
the reporter's name or address as long as the report is otherwise sufficient under this
paragraph. Written reports received by a police department or the county sheriff shall be
forwarded immediately to the local welfare agency or the agency responsible for assessing
or investigating the report. The police department or the county sheriff may keep copies of
reports received by them. Copies of written reports received by a local welfare department
or the agency responsible for assessing or investigating the report shall be forwarded
immediately to the local police department or the county sheriff.

(c) When requested, the agency responsible for assessing or investigating a report
shall inform the reporter within ten days after the report was made, either orally or in
writing, whether the report was accepted or not. If the responsible agency determines the
report does not constitute a report under this section, the agency shall advise the reporter
the report was screened out. deleted text beginA screened-out report must not be used for any purpose other
than making an offer of social services to the subjects of the screened-out report.
deleted text end

(d) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), the commissioner of education must inform the
parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the child who is the subject of a report of alleged
maltreatment in a school facility within ten days of receiving the report, either orally or
in writing, whether the commissioner is assessing or investigating the report of alleged
maltreatment.

(e) Regardless of whether a report is made under this subdivision, as soon as
practicable after a school receives information regarding an incident that may constitute
maltreatment of a child in a school facility, the school shall inform the parent, legal
guardian, or custodian of the child that an incident has occurred that may constitute
maltreatment of the child, when the incident occurred, and the nature of the conduct
that may constitute maltreatment.

(f) A written copy of a report maintained by personnel of agencies, other than
welfare or law enforcement agencies, which are subject to chapter 13 shall be confidential.
An individual subject of the report may obtain access to the original report as provided
by subdivision 11.

Sec. 6.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivision 10, is amended to read:


Subd. 10.

Duties of local welfare agency and local law enforcement agency upon
receipt of report.

(a) Upon receipt of a report, the local welfare agency shall determine
whether to conduct a family assessment or an investigation as appropriate to prevent or
provide a remedy for child maltreatment. new text beginThe local welfare agency must notify local
law enforcement when a report is received, including reports that are not accepted for
investigation or assessment.
new text endThe local welfare agency:

(1) shall conduct an investigation on reports involving substantial child
endangerment;

(2) shall begin an immediate investigation if, at any time when it is using a family
assessment response, it determines that there is reason to believe that substantial child
endangerment or a serious threat to the child's safety exists;

(3) may conduct a family assessment for reports that do not allege substantial child
endangerment. In determining that a family assessment is appropriate, the local welfare
agency may consider issues of child safety, parental cooperation, and the need for an
immediate response; and

(4) may conduct a family assessment on a report that was initially screened and
assigned for an investigation. In determining that a complete investigation is not required,
the local welfare agency must document the reason for terminating the investigation and
notify the local law enforcement agency if the local law enforcement agency is conducting
a joint investigation.

If the report alleges neglect, physical abuse, or sexual abuse by a parent, guardian,
or individual functioning within the family unit as a person responsible for the child's
care, or sexual abuse by a person with a significant relationship to the child when that
person resides in the child's household or by a sibling, the local welfare agency shall
immediately conduct a family assessment or investigation as identified in clauses (1) to
(4). In conducting a family assessment or investigation, the local welfare agency shall
gather information on the existence of substance abuse and domestic violence and offer
services for purposes of preventing future child maltreatment, safeguarding and enhancing
the welfare of the abused or neglected minor, and supporting and preserving family
life whenever possible. If the report alleges a violation of a criminal statute involving
sexual abuse, physical abuse, or neglect or endangerment, under section 609.378, the
local law enforcement agency and local welfare agency shall coordinate the planning and
execution of their respective investigation and assessment efforts to avoid a duplication of
fact-finding efforts and multiple interviews. Each agency shall prepare a separate report of
the results of its investigation. In cases of alleged child maltreatment resulting in death,
the local agency may rely on the fact-finding efforts of a law enforcement investigation
to make a determination of whether or not maltreatment occurred. When necessary the
local welfare agency shall seek authority to remove the child from the custody of a parent,
guardian, or adult with whom the child is living. In performing any of these duties, the
local welfare agency shall maintain appropriate records.

If the family assessment or investigation indicates there is a potential for abuse of
alcohol or other drugs by the parent, guardian, or person responsible for the child's care,
the local welfare agency shall conduct a chemical use assessment pursuant to Minnesota
Rules, part 9530.6615.

(b) When a local agency receives a report or otherwise has information indicating
that a child who is a client, as defined in section 245.91, has been the subject of physical
abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect at an agency, facility, or program as defined in section
245.91, it shall, in addition to its other duties under this section, immediately inform the
ombudsman established under sections 245.91 to 245.97. The commissioner of education
shall inform the ombudsman established under sections 245.91 to 245.97 of reports
regarding a child defined as a client in section 245.91 that maltreatment occurred at a
school as defined in sections 120A.05, subdivisions 9, 11, and 13, and 124D.10.

(c) Authority of the local welfare agency responsible for assessing or investigating
the child abuse or neglect report, the agency responsible for assessing or investigating
the report, and of the local law enforcement agency for investigating the alleged abuse or
neglect includes, but is not limited to, authority to interview, without parental consent,
the alleged victim and any other minors who currently reside with or who have resided
with the alleged offender. The interview may take place at school or at any facility or
other place where the alleged victim or other minors might be found or the child may be
transported to, and the interview conducted at, a place appropriate for the interview of a
child designated by the local welfare agency or law enforcement agency. The interview
may take place outside the presence of the alleged offender or parent, legal custodian,
guardian, or school official. For family assessments, it is the preferred practice to request
a parent or guardian's permission to interview the child prior to conducting the child
interview, unless doing so would compromise the safety assessment. Except as provided in
this paragraph, the parent, legal custodian, or guardian shall be notified by the responsible
local welfare or law enforcement agency no later than the conclusion of the investigation
or assessment that this interview has occurred. Notwithstanding rule 32 of the Minnesota
Rules of Procedure for Juvenile Courts, the juvenile court may, after hearing on an ex parte
motion by the local welfare agency, order that, where reasonable cause exists, the agency
withhold notification of this interview from the parent, legal custodian, or guardian. If the
interview took place or is to take place on school property, the order shall specify that
school officials may not disclose to the parent, legal custodian, or guardian the contents
of the notification of intent to interview the child on school property, as provided under
this paragraph, and any other related information regarding the interview that may be a
part of the child's school record. A copy of the order shall be sent by the local welfare or
law enforcement agency to the appropriate school official.

(d) When the local welfare, local law enforcement agency, or the agency responsible
for assessing or investigating a report of maltreatment determines that an interview should
take place on school property, written notification of intent to interview the child on school
property must be received by school officials prior to the interview. The notification
shall include the name of the child to be interviewed, the purpose of the interview, and
a reference to the statutory authority to conduct an interview on school property. For
interviews conducted by the local welfare agency, the notification shall be signed by the
chair of the local social services agency or the chair's designee. The notification shall be
private data on individuals subject to the provisions of this paragraph. School officials
may not disclose to the parent, legal custodian, or guardian the contents of the notification
or any other related information regarding the interview until notified in writing by the
local welfare or law enforcement agency that the investigation or assessment has been
concluded, unless a school employee or agent is alleged to have maltreated the child.
Until that time, the local welfare or law enforcement agency or the agency responsible
for assessing or investigating a report of maltreatment shall be solely responsible for any
disclosures regarding the nature of the assessment or investigation.

Except where the alleged offender is believed to be a school official or employee,
the time and place, and manner of the interview on school premises shall be within the
discretion of school officials, but the local welfare or law enforcement agency shall have
the exclusive authority to determine who may attend the interview. The conditions as to
time, place, and manner of the interview set by the school officials shall be reasonable and
the interview shall be conducted not more than 24 hours after the receipt of the notification
unless another time is considered necessary by agreement between the school officials and
the local welfare or law enforcement agency. Where the school fails to comply with the
provisions of this paragraph, the juvenile court may order the school to comply. Every
effort must be made to reduce the disruption of the educational program of the child, other
students, or school staff when an interview is conducted on school premises.

(e) Where the alleged offender or a person responsible for the care of the alleged
victim or other minor prevents access to the victim or other minor by the local welfare
agency, the juvenile court may order the parents, legal custodian, or guardian to produce
the alleged victim or other minor for questioning by the local welfare agency or the local
law enforcement agency outside the presence of the alleged offender or any person
responsible for the child's care at reasonable places and times as specified by court order.

(f) Before making an order under paragraph (e), the court shall issue an order to
show cause, either upon its own motion or upon a verified petition, specifying the basis for
the requested interviews and fixing the time and place of the hearing. The order to show
cause shall be served personally and shall be heard in the same manner as provided in
other cases in the juvenile court. The court shall consider the need for appointment of a
guardian ad litem to protect the best interests of the child. If appointed, the guardian ad
litem shall be present at the hearing on the order to show cause.

(g) The commissioner of human services, the ombudsman for mental health and
developmental disabilities, the local welfare agencies responsible for investigating reports,
the commissioner of education, and the local law enforcement agencies have the right to
enter facilities as defined in subdivision 2 and to inspect and copy the facility's records,
including medical records, as part of the investigation. Notwithstanding the provisions of
chapter 13, they also have the right to inform the facility under investigation that they are
conducting an investigation, to disclose to the facility the names of the individuals under
investigation for abusing or neglecting a child, and to provide the facility with a copy of
the report and the investigative findings.

(h) The local welfare agency responsible for conducting a family assessment or
investigation shall collect available and relevant information to determine child safety,
risk of subsequent child maltreatment, and family strengths and needs and share not public
information with an Indian's tribal social services agency without violating any law of the
state that may otherwise impose duties of confidentiality on the local welfare agency in
order to implement the tribal state agreement. The local welfare agency or the agency
responsible for investigating the report shall collect available and relevant information
to ascertain whether maltreatment occurred and whether protective services are needed.
Information collected includes, when relevant, information with regard to the person
reporting the alleged maltreatment, including the nature of the reporter's relationship to the
child and to the alleged offender, and the basis of the reporter's knowledge for the report;
the child allegedly being maltreated; the alleged offender; the child's caretaker; and other
collateral sources having relevant information related to the alleged maltreatment. The
local welfare agency or the agency responsible for investigating the report may make a
determination of no maltreatment early in an investigation, and close the case and retain
immunity, if the collected information shows no basis for a full investigation.

Information relevant to the assessment or investigation must be asked for, and
may include:

(1) the child's sex and age, prior reports of maltreatment, information relating
to developmental functioning, credibility of the child's statement, and whether the
information provided under this clause is consistent with other information collected
during the course of the assessment or investigation;

(2) the alleged offender's age, a record check for prior reports of maltreatment, and
criminal charges and convictions. The local welfare agency or the agency responsible for
assessing or investigating the report must provide the alleged offender with an opportunity
to make a statement. The alleged offender may submit supporting documentation relevant
to the assessment or investigation;

(3) collateral source information regarding the alleged maltreatment and care of the
child. Collateral information includes, when relevant: (i) a medical examination of the
child; (ii) prior medical records relating to the alleged maltreatment or the care of the
child maintained by any facility, clinic, or health care professional and an interview with
the treating professionals; and (iii) interviews with the child's caretakers, including the
child's parent, guardian, foster parent, child care provider, teachers, counselors, family
members, relatives, and other persons who may have knowledge regarding the alleged
maltreatment and the care of the child; and

(4) information on the existence of domestic abuse and violence in the home of
the child, and substance abuse.

Nothing in this paragraph precludes the local welfare agency, the local law
enforcement agency, or the agency responsible for assessing or investigating the report
from collecting other relevant information necessary to conduct the assessment or
investigation. Notwithstanding sections 13.384 or 144.291 to 144.298, the local welfare
agency has access to medical data and records for purposes of clause (3). Notwithstanding
the data's classification in the possession of any other agency, data acquired by the
local welfare agency or the agency responsible for assessing or investigating the report
during the course of the assessment or investigation are private data on individuals and
must be maintained in accordance with subdivision 11. Data of the commissioner of
education collected or maintained during and for the purpose of an investigation of
alleged maltreatment in a school are governed by this section, notwithstanding the data's
classification as educational, licensing, or personnel data under chapter 13.

In conducting an assessment or investigation involving a school facility as defined
in subdivision 2, paragraph (i), the commissioner of education shall collect investigative
reports and data that are relevant to a report of maltreatment and are from local law
enforcement and the school facility.

(i) Upon receipt of a report, the local welfare agency shall conduct a face-to-face
contact with the child reported to be maltreated and with the child's primary caregiver
sufficient to complete a safety assessment and ensure the immediate safety of the child.
The face-to-face contact with the child and primary caregiver shall occur immediately
if substantial child endangerment is alleged and within five calendar days for all other
reports. If the alleged offender was not already interviewed as the primary caregiver, the
local welfare agency shall also conduct a face-to-face interview with the alleged offender
in the early stages of the assessment or investigation. At the initial contact, the local child
welfare agency or the agency responsible for assessing or investigating the report must
inform the alleged offender of the complaints or allegations made against the individual in
a manner consistent with laws protecting the rights of the person who made the report.
The interview with the alleged offender may be postponed if it would jeopardize an active
law enforcement investigation.

(j) When conducting an investigation, the local welfare agency shall use a question
and answer interviewing format with questioning as nondirective as possible to elicit
spontaneous responses. For investigations only, the following interviewing methods and
procedures must be used whenever possible when collecting information:

(1) audio recordings of all interviews with witnesses and collateral sources; and

(2) in cases of alleged sexual abuse, audio-video recordings of each interview with
the alleged victim and child witnesses.

(k) In conducting an assessment or investigation involving a school facility as
defined in subdivision 2, paragraph (i), the commissioner of education shall collect
available and relevant information and use the procedures in paragraphs (i), (k), and
subdivision 3d, except that the requirement for face-to-face observation of the child
and face-to-face interview of the alleged offender is to occur in the initial stages of the
assessment or investigation provided that the commissioner may also base the assessment
or investigation on investigative reports and data received from the school facility and
local law enforcement, to the extent those investigations satisfy the requirements of
paragraphs (i) and (k), and subdivision 3d.

Sec. 7.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 626.556, subdivision 11c, is amended to read:


Subd. 11c.

Welfare, court services agency, and school records maintained.

Notwithstanding sections 138.163 and 138.17, records maintained or records derived
from reports of abuse by local welfare agencies, agencies responsible for assessing or
investigating the report, court services agencies, or schools under this section shall be
destroyed as provided in paragraphs (a) to (d) by the responsible authority.

(a) Fornew text begin reports alleging child maltreatment that were not accepted for assessment
or investigation,
new text end family assessment casesnew text begin,new text end and cases where an investigation results in no
determination of maltreatment or the need for child protective services, the assessment
or investigation records must be maintained for a period of deleted text beginfourdeleted text endnew text begin fivenew text end years after the date
of the final entry in the case record. Records under this paragraph may not be used for
employment, background checks, or purposes other than to assist in future risk and
safety assessments.

(b) All records relating to reports which, upon investigation, indicate either
maltreatment or a need for child protective services shall be maintained for ten years after
the date of the final entry in the case record.

(c) All records regarding a report of maltreatment, including any notification of intent
to interview which was received by a school under subdivision 10, paragraph (d), shall be
destroyed by the school when ordered to do so by the agency conducting the assessment or
investigation. The agency shall order the destruction of the notification when other records
relating to the report under investigation or assessment are destroyed under this subdivision.

(d) Private or confidential data released to a court services agency under subdivision
10h must be destroyed by the court services agency when ordered to do so by the local
welfare agency that released the data. The local welfare agency or agency responsible for
assessing or investigating the report shall order destruction of the data when other records
relating to the assessment or investigation are destroyed under this subdivision.

deleted text begin (e) For reports alleging child maltreatment that were not accepted for assessment
or investigation, counties shall maintain sufficient information to identify repeat reports
alleging maltreatment of the same child or children for 365 days from the date the report
was screened out. The commissioner of human services shall specify to the counties the
minimum information needed to accomplish this purpose. Counties shall enter this data
into the state social services information system.
deleted text end

Sec. 8. new text beginINSTRUCTIONS TO THE COMMISSIONER; SCREENING
GUIDELINES.
new text end

new text begin (a) No later than August 1, 2015, the commissioner of human services shall
update the child maltreatment screening guidelines to require agencies to consider prior
screened-out reports when determining whether a new report will be screened out or will
be accepted for investigation or assessment. The updated guidelines must emphasize that
intervention and prevention efforts are to focus on child safety and the ongoing risk of
child abuse or neglect and that the health and safety of children are of paramount concern.
new text end

new text begin (b) No later than September 30, 2015, the commissioner shall publish and distribute
the updated guidelines and ensure that all agency staff have received training on the
updated guidelines.
new text end

new text begin (c) Agency staff must implement the guidelines on October 1, 2015.
new text end