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SF 843

as introduced - 92nd Legislature (2021 - 2022) Posted on 04/07/2021 09:38am

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

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to families; modifying child welfare provisions; establishing the Minnesota
African American Family Preservation Act; providing criminal penalties; requiring
a report; appropriating money; amending Minnesota Statutes 2020, section
260C.329, subdivision 3; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes,
chapter 260.

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

Section 1.

new text begin [260.61] CITATION.
new text end

new text begin Sections 260.61 to 260.695 may be cited as the "Minnesota African American Family
Preservation Act."
new text end

Sec. 2.

new text begin [260.62] PURPOSES.
new text end

new text begin (a) The purpose of the Minnesota African American Family Preservation Act is to:
new text end

new text begin (1) protect the best interests of African American children;
new text end

new text begin (2) promote the stability and security of African American children and families by
establishing minimum standards to prevent arbitrary and unnecessary removal of African
American children from their families; and
new text end

new text begin (3) improve permanency outcomes, including family reunification, for African American
children.
new text end

new text begin (b) Nothing in this legislation is intended to interfere with the protections of the Indian
Child Welfare Act of 1978, United States Code, title 25, sections 1901 to 1963.
new text end

Sec. 3.

new text begin [260.63] DEFINITIONS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Scope. new text end

new text begin The definitions in this section apply to sections 260.61 to 260.695.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Active efforts. new text end

new text begin "Active efforts" means a rigorous and concerted level of effort
that the local social services agency must continuously make throughout the time that the
local social services agency is involved with an African American child and family. To
provide active efforts to preserve an African American child and family, the local social
services agency must continuously involve an African American family and the African
American Welfare Oversight Council in all services for the family, including case planning
and choosing services and providers. When providing active efforts, the local social services
agency is required to consider the African American family's social and cultural values at
all times while providing services to a child and family. Active efforts includes continuous
efforts to preserve an African American child's family and to prevent out-of-home placement
of an African American child. If an African American child is placed out-of-home, the local
social services agency is required to make active efforts to reunify the African American
child with the child's family as soon as possible. Active efforts sets a higher standard for
the local social services agency than reasonable efforts to preserve the family, prevent
breaking up the family, and reunify the family, according to section 260.762. Active efforts
includes the provision of reasonable efforts as required by Title IV-E of the Social Security
Act, United States Code, title 42, sections 670 to 679c.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin African American child. new text end

new text begin "African American child" is a child having origins
in Africa, including a child of two or more races who has at least one parent with origins
in Africa.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Best interest of the African American child. new text end

new text begin "Best interest of the African
American child" means providing a culturally informed practice lens that acknowledges,
utilizes, and embraces the community and cultural norms of an African American child and
allows the child to remain safely at home with the child's family. The best interest of the
child supports the child's sense of belonging to family, extended family, kin, and cultural
community.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Child placement proceeding. new text end

new text begin (a) "Child placement proceeding" includes a
judicial proceeding which could have a result described in paragraphs (b) to (e).
new text end

new text begin (b) "Adoptive placement" means the permanent placement of an African American child
for adoption, including an action resulting in a final decree of adoption.
new text end

new text begin (c) "Court-ordered foster care placement" means the removal of an African American
child from the child's home with the child's parents or legal custodians and the temporary
placement of the child in a foster home, in shelter care, or in the home of a guardian, when
the parents or legal custodians cannot have the child returned upon demand but whose
parental rights have not been terminated.
new text end

new text begin (d) "Preadoptive placement" means the placement of a child with the child's family or
kin when the child is under the guardianship of the commissioner of human services and
when an adoptive placement agreement for the child has been fully executed.
new text end

new text begin (e) "Termination of parental rights" means an action resulting in the termination of the
parent-child relationship under section 260C.301.
new text end

new text begin (f) The terms in this subdivision include a child's placement based upon a child's juvenile
status offense, but do not include a placement based upon (1) an act which if committed by
an adult would be deemed a crime, or (2) an award of custody in a divorce proceeding to
one of the child's parents.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 6. new text end

new text begin Commissioner. new text end

new text begin "Commissioner" means the commissioner of human services.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 7. new text end

new text begin Disproportionality. new text end

new text begin "Disproportionality" means the overrepresentation of
African American children in the state's child welfare system population as compared to
the group's representation in the state's total child population.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 8. new text end

new text begin Family preservation services. new text end

new text begin "Family preservation services" means intensive
family-centered services that are provided to a family primarily in the family's own home
or community when the services are based on the individualized needs of the family.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 9. new text end

new text begin Local social services agency. new text end

new text begin "Local social services agency" has the meaning
given in section 260.755, subdivision 13.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 10. new text end

new text begin Parent. new text end

new text begin "Parent" means the biological parent of an African American child
or any person who has legally adopted an African American child. Parent includes an
unmarried father whose paternity has been acknowledged or established, as well as an
alleged father. Paternity has been acknowledged when an unmarried father takes any action
to hold himself out as the biological father of a child.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 11. new text end

new text begin Relative. new text end

new text begin "Relative" means a person related to the child by blood, marriage,
or adoption, an individual who is an important friend of the child or child's family with
whom the child has resided or has had significant contact, or a person whom the child or
the child's family identify as related to the child's family.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 12. new text end

new text begin Safety network. new text end

new text begin "Safety network" means a group of individuals identified by
the parent that is accountable for developing, implementing, sustaining, supporting, or
improving a safety plan to protect the safety and well-being of a child.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 13. new text end

new text begin Sexual abuse. new text end

new text begin "Sexual abuse" has the meaning given in section 260E.03,
subdivision 20.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 14. new text end

new text begin Substantial child endangerment. new text end

new text begin "Substantial child endangerment" has the
meaning given in section 260E.03, subdivision 22.
new text end

Sec. 4.

new text begin [260.64] DUTY TO PREVENT OUT-OF-HOME PLACEMENT AND
PROMOTE FAMILY REUNIFICATION.
new text end

new text begin (a) A local social services agency shall make active efforts to prevent the out-of-home
placement of an African American child, eliminate the need for a child's removal from the
child's home, and reunify an African American child with the child's family as soon as
practicable.
new text end

new text begin (b) Prior to removing an African American child from the child's home, a local social
services agency must work with the child's family to allow the child to remain living in the
child's home while implementing an in-home safety plan based on the needs of the family.
The local social services agency must establish a safety network for the family and engage
the safety network in developing the safety plan. The child's parent or guardian must actively
participate in creating the safety plan with guidance and input from the local social services
agency. The safety plan must address the child's basic needs and incorporate family and
community support to ensure the child's safety while keeping the family intact. The local
social services agency is not required to establish a safety plan in cases with allegations of
sexual abuse or egregious harm.
new text end

new text begin (c) Unless the court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the child's health or
welfare would be immediately endangered if the child were to remain in the child's home,
a court shall not order an out-of-home or permanency placement of an African American
child alleged to be in need of protective services unless the court finds that the local social
services agency has made active efforts to preserve the child's family. At each hearing
regarding an African American child who is alleged to be in need of child protective services,
the court shall review the local social services agency's provision of active efforts to the
child and the child's family and the court shall require the local social services agency to
provide documentation and evidence that demonstrates how the agency continues to provide
culturally informed, strength-based, community-involved, and community-based services
to the child and the child's family. In determining whether the local social services agency
has made active efforts to preserve the family for purposes of the child's out-of-home
placement and permanency, the court shall make findings regarding whether the local social
services agency made appropriate and meaningful family-based services available to the
child's family based upon the family's specific needs. If a court determines that the local
social services agency did not make active efforts to preserve the family as required by this
section, the court shall order the local social services agency to immediately provide active
efforts to the child and child's family to preserve the family.
new text end

Sec. 5.

new text begin [260.65] TEMPORARY OUT-OF-HOME PLACEMENT.
new text end

new text begin (a) Prior to placing an African American child in foster care, the responsible local social
services agency must make active efforts to identify and locate the child's noncustodial or
nonadjudicated parent and the child's relatives to notify them that the child needs a foster
home and provide them with a list of legal resources. The agency must also inform the
child's noncustodial or nonadjudicated parent and relatives of the option to become a
placement resource for the child and the possibility that the child will need a permanent
placement. If prior notice is not possible, the agency must notify the noncustodial or
nonadjudicated parent and identified relatives of the child's need for a foster home within
48 hours of a child's removal from the custodial parent's care. The local social services
agency must maintain detailed records of the agency's efforts to notify parents and relatives
under this section.
new text end

new text begin (b) Notwithstanding the provisions of section 260C.219, if a child's noncustodial or
nonadjudicated parent is willing to and capable of providing daily care of the African
American child temporarily or permanently, the local social services agency shall temporarily
place the child with the noncustodial or nonadjudicated parent. Prior to initial placement
with a noncustodial or nonadjudicated parent, the local social services agency must conduct
an immediate assessment of the parent's ability to care for the child.
new text end

new text begin (c) If a child's noncustodial or nonadjudicated parent is unwilling to or incapable of
caring for the child and the local social services agency has determined that continued
placement of the child in the home of the child's parent would endanger the child's health,
safety, or welfare, the local social services agency shall comply with the custodial or
noncustodial parent or legal custodian's request to temporarily place the child with a relative
selected by the child's parent or legal custodian. If selected relatives are not available, the
local social services agency shall consider additional relatives for the child's placement.
Prior to initial placement of the child with a relative, the local social services agency must
conduct an assessment of the relative's ability to care for the child.
new text end

new text begin (d) The local social services agency must make active efforts to allow a noncustodial
and nonadjudicated parent or a selected relative to remedy any issues that prevent placement
of the child, including bars to licensing the relative's home as a foster home. If the relative
has a temporary or permanent bar to obtaining a foster care license, the local social services
agency must make active efforts to assist the relative in applying for a variance to place the
child with the relative. The local social services agency is only relieved of the duty to make
active efforts to place the child with a particular relative if the agency can demonstrate that
it would not be consistent with the child's best interests to place the child with the particular
relative.
new text end

new text begin (e) If, after conducting an assessment, the local social services agency determines that
the child cannot be placed with the relative or the noncustodial or nonadjudicated parent,
the local social services agency must provide specific reasons with supporting evidence in
writing to the court explaining why the child's placement with a noncustodial parent or
relative is not possible.
new text end

Sec. 6.

new text begin [260.66] EMERGENCY REMOVAL HEARING.
new text end

new text begin Notwithstanding section 260C.163, subdivision 3, and the provisions of Minnesota Rules
of Juvenile Protection Procedure Rule 25, a parent of an African American child who is
subject to an emergency protective care hearing pursuant to section 260C.178 and Minnesota
Rules of Juvenile Protection Procedure Rule 30 must be represented by counsel. The court
must appoint qualified counsel to represent the parent if the parent meets the eligibility
requirements in section 611.17.
new text end

Sec. 7.

new text begin [260.67] TERMINATION OF PARENTAL RIGHTS; CHILD PLACEMENT
PROCEEDINGS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Termination of parental rights restrictions. new text end

new text begin (a) A court shall not
terminate the parental rights of an African American parent based solely on the parent's
failure to complete case plan requirements.
new text end

new text begin (b) A court shall not terminate the parental rights of an African American parent in child
placement proceedings unless the allegations against the parent involve sexual abuse;
egregious harm as defined in section 260C.007, subdivision 14; murder in the first, second,
or third degree under section 609.185, 609.19, or 609.195; murder of an unborn child in the
first, second, or third degree under sections 609.2661, 609.2662, or 609.2663; manslaughter
in the first or second degree under section 609.20 or 609.205; manslaughter of an unborn
child in the first or second degree under sections 609.2664 or 609.2665; assault in the first,
second, or third degree under section 609.221, 609.222, or 609.223; domestic assault by
strangulation under section 609.2247; felony domestic assault under sections 609.2242 or
609.2243; kidnapping under section 609.25; solicitation, inducement, and promotion of
prostitution under section 609.322; criminal sexual conduct under sections 609.342 to
609.3451; engaging in, hiring, or agreeing to hire a minor to engage in prostitution under
section 609.324, subdivision 1; solicitation of children to engage in sexual conduct under
section 609.352; possession of pornographic work involving minors under section 617.247;
malicious punishment or neglect or endangerment of a child under section 609.377 or
609.378; use of a minor in sexual performance under section 617.246; or failing to protect
a child from an overt act or condition that constitutes egregious harm. The court shall, if
possible, transfer permanent legal and physical custody to a fit and willing relative or third
party if the court determines that there is continued need for out-of-home placement of the
child.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Appeals. new text end

new text begin Notwithstanding the provisions of Minnesota Rules of Juvenile
Protection Procedure Rule 47.02, subdivision 2, an African American parent whose parental
rights have been terminated may appeal the decision within 60 days of the service of notice
by the court administrator of the filing of the court's order.
new text end

Sec. 8.

new text begin [260.68] LOCAL WELFARE AGENCY CONDUCT AND CASE REVIEW.
new text end

new text begin (a) A local social services agency employee who has duties related to child protection
shall not knowingly:
new text end

new text begin (1) make untrue statements about any case involving a child alleged to be in need of
protection or services;
new text end

new text begin (2) intentionally withhold any information that may be material to a case involving a
child alleged to be in need of protection or services; or
new text end

new text begin (3) fabricate or falsify any documentation or evidence relating to a case involving a child
alleged to be in need of protection or services.
new text end

new text begin (b) Any of the actions listed in paragraph (a) shall constitute grounds for adverse
employment action.
new text end

new text begin (c) When a local social services agency screens in a report alleging maltreatment of an
African American child or places an African American child in an involuntary out-of-home
placement, the agency shall, within seven days after screening in the report or initiating the
child's out-of-home placement, notify the Department of Human Services of the maltreatment
report or child's out-of-home placement and of the steps that the agency has taken to
investigate and remedy the conditions that led to the report or placement. Upon receiving
a report alleging maltreatment of an African American child or notice that an African
American child was placed out-of-home, the Department of Human Services shall review
the local social services agency's handling of the child's case to ensure that the case plans
and services address the unique needs of the child and the child's family and that the agency
is making active efforts to preserve the child's family in compliance with the African
American Family Preservation Act. At all stages of a case involving an African American
child, the local social services agency shall, upon request, fully cooperate with the Department
of Human Services and the African American Child Welfare Oversight Council and provide
access to all relevant case files.
new text end

new text begin (d) In any involuntary adoptive or preadoptive placement proceeding involving an
African American child, the local social services agency shall notify the Department of
Human Services of the pending proceeding and of the right of intervention. No preadoptive
or adoptive placement proceeding where there will be placement with a nonrelative may
be held until at least 30 days after receipt of the notice by the Department of Human Services
or until a home study can be completed for a relative kinship adoption, whichever occurs
first. Upon receipt of the notice, the Department of Human Services shall review the case
to ensure that the requirements of the African American Family Preservation Act have been
met.
new text end

new text begin If the Department of Human Services requests time to prepare for the proceeding, the
district court must grant the Department of Human Services up to 30 additional days to
prepare for the proceeding. The agency or notifying party shall include in the notice the
identity of the birth parents and child. In cases that an agency or party to an adoptive
placement knows or has reason to believe that a child is or may be African American, proof
of service upon the Department of Human Services must be filed with the adoption petition.
new text end

new text begin (e) The local social services agency shall conduct a case review every 24 months after
a 2021 baseline is established. The local social services agency shall report the agency's
findings to the county board, related child welfare committees, the Children's Justice Initiative
team, the African American Child Welfare Oversight Council, and community stakeholders
within six months of gathering data. For situations in which the data being reported would
be smaller than five, the data must only be reported to the African American Child Welfare
Oversight Council. The case review must include:
new text end

new text begin (1) the number of African American children represented in the local county child welfare
system;
new text end

new text begin (2) the number and race of maltreatment reports received and reports accepted for
investigation or referred for family assessment;
new text end

new text begin (3) the number and race of children and parents who receive in-home preventive case
management services;
new text end

new text begin (4) the number and race of children whose parents are referred to community-based,
culturally appropriate, strength-based, or trauma-informed services;
new text end

new text begin (5) the number and race of children removed from their homes;
new text end

new text begin (6) the number and race of children reunified with their parents;
new text end

new text begin (7) the number and race of children whose parents are offered family group decision
making services;
new text end

new text begin (8) the number and race of children whose parents are offered the parent support outreach
program;
new text end

new text begin (9) the number and race of children in out-of-home placement;
new text end

new text begin (10) the number and race of children who find permanency through guardianship and
adoption; and
new text end

new text begin (11) the number and race of children under guardianship of the commissioner or waiting
to be adopted.
new text end

new text begin (f) Case review shall also:
new text end

new text begin (1) identify barriers to reunifying children with their parents;
new text end

new text begin (2) identify family conditions that led to the need for out-of-home placement;
new text end

new text begin (3) identify any barriers to accessing culturally informed mental health or substance use
disorder treatment services for the parent or child;
new text end

new text begin (4) document efforts to identify a child's father and paternal relatives, and provision of
services to custodial and noncustodial fathers, if appropriate; and
new text end

new text begin (5) document and summarize court reviews of active efforts.
new text end

new text begin (g) Any local social services agency that has a disproportionate rate of outcomes across
the child welfare process must develop a remediation plan with measurable outcomes to
address and reduce the factors that led to the disproportionate outcomes. The plan must
include information about how the local social services agency will achieve and document
trauma-informed, positive child well-being outcomes through remediation efforts. The local
social services agency must develop the plan within 30 days of discovery of the disparity
and the agency must make measurable improvements within 12 months. A local social
services agency may request assistance from the African American Child Welfare Oversight
Council to develop a remediation plan.
new text end

new text begin (h) Any local social services agency that fails to comply with this section will be subject
to corrective action and a fine determined by the commissioner.
new text end

Sec. 9.

new text begin [260.69] AFRICAN AMERICAN CHILD WELFARE OVERSIGHT
COUNCIL.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Creation. new text end

new text begin (a) The commissioner shall appoint an African American Child
Welfare Oversight Council to formulate policies and procedures relating to child welfare
services for African American children to ensure that local social services agencies provide
African American families with culturally relevant family preservation services and
opportunities to care for their children safely in their homes.
new text end

new text begin (b) The terms, compensation, and removal of council members shall be as provided in
section 15.059. The advisory council does not expire.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Membership and composition. new text end

new text begin (a) The council shall consist of 31 members
and must include:
new text end

new text begin (1) 15 members from African American families and communities that have been
impacted by the child welfare process, including child welfare policy and social work
professionals and paraprofessionals, community leaders, and community members;
new text end

new text begin (2) local social services agency representatives from the six counties with the highest
populations of disproportionately represented African American children in the state; and
new text end

new text begin (3) two parents of African American children from each of the four regions of the state.
new text end

new text begin (b) The council shall have two cochairs, one from the Department of Human Services
county agency and the other an African American parent with experience in the child welfare
system.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Meeting. new text end

new text begin The council shall meet at least six times per year, but may meet more
frequently at the call of the chair, a majority of the council members, or the commissioner.
Subgroups of the council may meet more frequently as necessary.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Duties. new text end

new text begin The African American Child Welfare Oversight Council shall:
new text end

new text begin (1) monitor the number of African American children in out-of-home placement in a
joint effort with the Department of Human Services;
new text end

new text begin (2) review summary reports on case reviews prepared by specialists to ensure that local
social services agencies meet the needs of African American families. The council may
review individual case data with identifying information removed to provide context and
oversight for disparities in the treatment of African American children and families as
compared to other children and families;
new text end

new text begin (3) develop a culturally appropriate service model for shelter and foster care settings to
follow that describes how to provide services for African American children in a culturally
appropriate manner;
new text end

new text begin (4) develop and promote public policies and child protection laws that specifically
consider the needs of African American children and families;
new text end

new text begin (5) coordinate stakeholder and agency efforts to improve child welfare outcomes for
African American children and families;
new text end

new text begin (6) initiate a public awareness campaign on the issue of racial disparities in out-of-home
placement of African American children as compared to children of other races;
new text end

new text begin (7) partner with the Department of Human Services to coordinate services and create
partnerships to provide housing assistance, employment assistance, and education support
and training for African American children and families; and
new text end

new text begin (8) partner with the commissioner and local social services agencies to promote hiring
and recruitment practices that consider diverse candidates and candidates who have been
impacted by the child welfare system.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Case review. new text end

new text begin (a) Upon the request of a child's parent, the African American
Child Welfare Oversight Council may initiate a case review of a child's case in order to
provide recommendations to the Department of Human Services and the local social services
agency to improve the child welfare system and provide better outcomes for the child and
the child's family.
new text end

new text begin (b) Upon the request of the parent, members of the African American Child Welfare
Oversight Council shall have access to the following data for a child's case review under
this subdivision:
new text end

new text begin (1) police investigative data;
new text end

new text begin (2) autopsy records and coroner or medical examiner investigative data;
new text end

new text begin (3) hospital, public health, and other medical records of the child;
new text end

new text begin (4) hospital and other medical records of the child's parent that relate to prenatal care;
new text end

new text begin (5) records of local social services agencies that provided services to the child or family;
and
new text end

new text begin (6) a local social services agency's personnel data regarding any agency employees who
provided services to the child or child's family members.
new text end

new text begin A state agency, statewide system, or political subdivision shall provide the data in paragraph
(b) to the African American Oversight Council and its members upon request of the
commissioner. Not public data may be shared with members of the council in connection
with an individual case.
new text end

new text begin (b) Notwithstanding the data's classification in the possession of any other agency, data
acquired by the African American Child Welfare Oversight Council in the exercise of its
duties are protected nonpublic or confidential data as defined in section 13.02, but may be
disclosed by council members as necessary to carry out the purposes of the council. The
data are not subject to subpoena or discovery. The commissioner may disclose conclusions
of the council, but may not disclose data on individuals that were classified as confidential
or private data on individuals in the possession of the state agency, statewide system, or
political subdivision from which the data were received, except that the commissioner may
disclose local social services agency data as provided in section 260E.35, subdivision 7, on
individual cases involving a fatality or near fatality of a person served by the local social
services agency prior to the date of death.
new text end

new text begin (c) A person attending an African American Child Welfare Oversight Council meeting
may not disclose what transpired at the meeting, except to carry out the purposes of the
council. The proceedings and records of the council are protected nonpublic data as defined
in section 13.02, subdivision 13, and are not subject to discovery or introduction into evidence
in a civil or criminal action against a professional, the state, or a county agency arising out
of the matters that the panel is reviewing. Information, documents, and records otherwise
available from other sources are not immune from discovery or use in a civil or criminal
action solely because they were presented during proceedings of the council. A person who
presented information before the council or who is a member of the council is not prevented
from testifying about matters within the person's knowledge. However, in a civil or criminal
proceeding, a person must not be questioned about the person's presentation of information
to the council or opinions formed by the person as a result of council meetings.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 6. new text end

new text begin Annual report. new text end

new text begin By January 1 of each year, beginning January 1, 2022, the
council shall report to the chairs and ranking minority members of the legislative committees
with jurisdiction over child protection on the council's activities under subdivision 4 and
other issues on which the council may choose to report. The report may include
recommendations for statutory changes that will improve the child welfare system for
African American children and families.
new text end

Sec. 10.

new text begin [260.694] CHILD WELFARE DISPROPORTIONALITY SPECIALISTS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Establishment. new text end

new text begin The commissioner shall appoint six child welfare
disproportionality specialists to provide assistance to counties and monitor child welfare
processes and outcomes to address and mitigate child welfare disparities.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Location. new text end

new text begin Two specialists shall serve Hennepin County and two specialists
shall serve Ramsey County. The two other specialists shall serve northern and southern
Minnesota, respectively.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Duties. new text end

new text begin The child welfare disproportionality specialists shall perform the
following functions:
new text end

new text begin (1) assist with the development and review of child welfare curriculum in the Minnesota
Child Welfare Training System to engage child protection social workers in training, improve
outcomes and child well-being for African American and other disproportionately represented
children, and better equip workers to provide services to parents;
new text end

new text begin (2) provide on-site technical assistance to counties;
new text end

new text begin (3) monitor the number of African American children in out-of-home placement statewide,
conduct case reviews, and respond to requests from families for case review;
new text end

new text begin (4) directly oversee, review, and consult on case plans and services offered by local
social services agencies to ensure that case plans and services address the unique needs of
each African American or other disproportionately represented family and comply with the
Minnesota African American Family Preservation Act;
new text end

new text begin (5) screen shelter and foster care settings, in cooperation with the African American
Child Welfare Oversight Council;
new text end

new text begin (6) establish and administer a request for proposals process for existing child welfare
disparities grants and any new child welfare disparity or disproportionality grants, monitor
grant activities, and provide technical assistance to grantees; and
new text end

new text begin (7) coordinate services and create partnerships to provide housing assistance, employment
assistance, and education support and training for African American children and families,
in cooperation with the African American Child Welfare Oversight Council.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Report. new text end

new text begin The child welfare disproportionality specialists shall provide a quarterly
report outlining their activities to the commissioner and the African American Child Welfare
Oversight Council, and shall publish an annual census of all disproportionately represented
children residing in out-of-home placements statewide. The annual census shall include
data on the types of placements, age and sex of the children, how long the children have
been in out-of-home placements, and other relevant demographic information.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Representation. new text end

new text begin Individuals appointed as specialists must represent the
population being served.
new text end

Sec. 11.

new text begin [260.695] CHILD WELFARE DISPARITIES AND
DISPROPORTIONALITY GRANTS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Primary support grants. new text end

new text begin The commissioner of human services shall
establish direct grants to organizations, service providers, and programs led by African
Americans to provide primary support for programs to implement the Minnesota African
American Family Preservation Act.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Eligible services. new text end

new text begin (a) Services eligible for grant money include, but are not
limited to:
new text end

new text begin (1) child placement prevention and reunification services;
new text end

new text begin (2) family-based services and reunification therapy;
new text end

new text begin (3) culturally specific individual and family counseling;
new text end

new text begin (4) court advocacy;
new text end

new text begin (5) training and consultation to county and private social services agencies regarding
the Minnesota African American Family Preservation Act under sections 260.61 to 260.695;
and
new text end

new text begin (6) other activities and services approved by the commissioner of human services that
further the goals of the Minnesota African American Family Preservation Act, including
but not limited to recruitment of African American staff for local social services agencies
and licensed child-placing agencies.
new text end

new text begin (b) The commissioner of human services may specify the priority of an activity and
service based on its success in furthering these goals. The commissioner of human services
shall give preference to programs and service providers that are located in or serve counties
with the highest rates of child welfare disproportionality and employ staff who represent
the population primarily served.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Ineligible services. new text end

new text begin Grant money may not be used for the following purposes:
new text end

new text begin (1) child day care necessary solely because of employment or training for employment
of a parent or other relative with whom the child is living;
new text end

new text begin (2) foster care maintenance or difficulty of care payments;
new text end

new text begin (3) residential facility payments;
new text end

new text begin (4) adoption assistance payments;
new text end

new text begin (5) public assistance payments for Minnesota family investment program assistance,
supplemental aid, medical assistance, general assistance, general assistance medical care,
or community health services; or
new text end

new text begin (6) administrative costs for income maintenance staff.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Requests for proposals. new text end

new text begin The commissioner of human services shall request
proposals for grants under subdivisions 1, 2, and 3, and specify the information and criteria
required.
new text end

Sec. 12.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 260C.329, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Petition.

The county attorney or a parent whose parental rights were terminated
under a previous order of the court may file a petition for the reestablishment of the legal
parent and child relationship. A parent filing a petition under this section shall pay a filing
fee in the amount required under section 357.021, subdivision 2, clause (1). The filing fee
may be waived deleted text beginpursuant to chapter 563deleted text endnew text begin in cases of indigencynew text end. A petition for the
reestablishment of the legal parent and child relationship may be filed when:

(1) deleted text beginin cases where the county attorney is the petitioning party,deleted text end both the responsible social
services agency and the county attorney agree that reestablishment of the legal parent and
child relationship is in the child's best interestsnew text begin. This clause must be satisfied only when the
county attorney is the petitioning party
new text end;

(2) the parent has corrected the conditions that led to an order terminating parental rights;

(3) the parent is willing and has the capability to provide day-to-day care and maintain
the health, safety, and welfare of the child;

deleted text begin (4) the child has been in foster care for at least 48 months after the court issued the order
terminating parental rights;
deleted text end

deleted text begin (5)deleted text endnew text begin (4)new text end the child has not been adopted; and

deleted text begin (6)deleted text endnew text begin (5)new text end the child is not the subject of a written adoption placement agreement between
the responsible social services agency and the prospective adoptive parent, as required under
Minnesota Rules, part 9560.0060, subpart 2.

Sec. 13. new text beginAFRICAN AMERICAN CULTURAL COMPETENCY TRAINING FOR
INDIVIDUALS WORKING WITH AFRICAN AMERICAN FAMILIES AND
CHILDREN IN THE CHILD PROTECTION SYSTEM.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Applicability. new text end

new text begin The commissioner of human services shall ensure that
African American cultural competency training is given to individuals working in the child
protection system, including child welfare workers, supervisors, attorneys, juvenile court
judges, and family law judges.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Training. new text end

new text begin (a) The commissioner and a representative from the African American
community shall work together to develop the training content and frequency, and to hire
the African American individual or individuals who will provide the training.
new text end

new text begin (b) The training:
new text end

new text begin (1) is required prior to working with the African American population and must be
provided in a manner that is easily accessible, comprehensive, and includes the option to
ask questions;
new text end

new text begin (2) must be provided by an African American individual who is knowledgeable about
African American social and cultural norms and historical trauma;
new text end

new text begin (3) must raise awareness and increase the competency to value diversity, conduct
self-assessment, manage the dynamics of difference, acquire cultural knowledge, and adapt
to diversity and cultural contexts of communities served;
new text end

new text begin (4) must include instruction on effectively developing a safety plan and instruction on
engaging a safety network;
new text end

new text begin (5) must be accessible and may be provided in a series of segments, either in person or
online; and
new text end

new text begin (6) must be available by January 1, 2022.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Update. new text end

new text begin The commissioner, in coordination with the African American Child
Welfare Oversight Council, shall update the legislative committee with jurisdiction over
child protection issues by January 1, 2022, on the rollout of the training under subdivision
1 and the content and accessibility of the training under subdivision 2.
new text end

Sec. 14. new text beginDISAGGREGATE DATA.
new text end

new text begin The commissioner of human services shall work with representatives of the African
American community and other disproportionately represented communities to establish a
method to disaggregate data related to disproportionately represented families, and begin
disaggregating data by January 1, 2022.
new text end

Sec. 15. new text beginINCREASED VISITATION FOR AFRICAN AMERICAN AND OTHER
DISPROPORTIONATELY REPRESENTED CHILDREN IN OUT-OF-HOME
PLACEMENT.
new text end

new text begin The local social services agency shall engage in best practices related to visitation when
an African American child is in out-of-home placement. When the child is in out-of-home
placement, the local social services agency shall make active efforts to facilitate regular and
frequent visitation between the child and the child's parents or guardians. If visitation is
infrequent between the child and the child's parents, the local social services agency shall
make active efforts to increase the frequency of visitation.
new text end

Sec. 16. new text beginAPPROPRIATION.
new text end

new text begin $....... in fiscal year 2022 is appropriated from the general fund to the commissioner of
human services for the administration of the Minnesota African American Family
Preservation and Child Welfare Disproportionality Act under Minnesota Statutes, sections
260.61 to 260.695. This is an ongoing appropriation and shall be added to the base.
new text end