AN ACT

 

1Amending Title 23 (Domestic Relations) of the Pennsylvania
2Consolidated Statutes, in child protective services, further
3providing for definitions, for information relating to 
4prospective child-care personnel, for information relating to 
5family day-care home residents and for information relating 
6to other persons having contact with children; and providing 
7for grounds for denying employment or participation in 
8program, activity or service and for certification 
9compliance.

10The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
11hereby enacts as follows:

12Section 1. The definition of "child care service" in section
136303(a) of Title 23 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes is
14amended to read:

15§ 6303. Definitions.

16(a) General rule.--The following words and phrases when used
17in this chapter shall have the meanings given to them in this
18section unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

19* * *

1"Child-care services." [Child day-care centers, group and
2family day-care homes, foster homes, adoptive parents, boarding
3homes for children, juvenile detention center services or
4programs for delinquent or dependent children; mental health,
5mental retardation, early intervention and drug and alcohol
6services for children; and other child-care services which are
7provided by or subject to approval, licensure, registration or
8certification by the Department of Public Welfare or a county
9social services agency or which are provided pursuant to a
10contract with these departments or a county social services
11agency. The term does not include such services or programs
12which may be offered by public and private schools, intermediate
13units or area vocational-technical schools.] Includes any of the 
14following:

15(1) Child day-care centers.

16(2) Group day-care homes.

17(3) Family day-care homes.

18(4) Foster homes.

19(5) Adoptive parents.

20(6) Boarding homes for children.

21(7) Juvenile detention center services or programs for
22delinquent or dependent children.

23(8) Mental health services for children.

24(9) Services for children with intellectual
25disabilities.

26(10) Early intervention services for children.

27(11) Drug and alcohol services for children.

28(12) Day-care services or programs that are offered by a
29school.

30(13) Other comparable services that are provided by or

1subject to approval, licensure, registration or certification
2by the department or a county social services agency or that
3are provided pursuant to a contract with the Department of
4Public Welfare or a county social services agency.

5* * *

6Section 2. Section 6344(a), (b), (c), (d)(3), (4) and (6),
7(i), (k), (l), (m), (n), (o) and (p) of Title 23 are amended and
8subsection (d) is amended by adding a paragraph to read:

9§ 6344. Information relating to prospective child-care
10personnel.

11(a) Applicability.--[This section applies to all prospective
12employees of child-care services, prospective foster parents,
13prospective adoptive parents, prospective self-employed family
14day-care providers and other persons seeking to provide child-
15care services under contract with a child-care facility or
16program. This section also applies to individuals 14 years of
17age or older who reside in the home of a prospective foster
18parent for at least 30 days in a calendar year or who reside in
19the home of a prospective adoptive parent for at least 30 days
20in a calendar year. This section does not apply to
21administrative or other support personnel unless their duties
22will involve direct contact with children.] This section applies 
23to any of the following individuals:

24(1) A prospective employee of child-care services.

25(2) A prospective foster parent.

26(3) A prospective adoptive parent.

27(4) A prospective self-employed family day-care
28provider.

29(5) Any person seeking to provide child-care services
30under contract with a child-care facility or program.

1(6) An individual 18 years of age or older who resides
2in the home of a prospective foster parent for at least 30
3days in a calendar year or who resides in the home of a
4prospective adoptive parent for at least 30 days in a
5calendar year.

6(b) [Information submitted by prospective employees.--
7Administrators of child-care services shall require applicants
8to submit with their applications the following information
9obtained within the preceding one-year period:] Information to 
10be submitted.--An individual identified in subsection (a)(6) at 
11the time the individual meets the description set forth in 
12subsection (a)(6) and an individual applying to serve in any 
13capacity identified in subsection (a)(1), (2), (3), (4) or (5) 
14at the time of application shall be required to submit the 
15following information obtained within the preceding one-year 
16period:

17(1) Pursuant to 18 Pa.C.S. Ch. 91 (relating to criminal
18history record information), a report of criminal history
19record information from the Pennsylvania State Police or a
20statement from the Pennsylvania State Police that the State
21Police central repository contains no such information
22relating to that person. The criminal history record
23information shall be limited to that which is disseminated
24pursuant to 18 Pa.C.S. § 9121(b)(2) (relating to general
25regulations).

26(2) A certification from the department as to whether
27the applicant is named in the central register as the
28perpetrator of a founded report of child abuse, indicated
29report of child abuse, founded report for school employee or
30indicated report for school employee.

1(3) A report of Federal criminal history record
2information. The applicant shall submit a full set of
3fingerprints in a manner prescribed by the department. The
4Commonwealth shall submit the fingerprints to the Federal
5Bureau of Investigation in order to obtain a report of
6Federal criminal history record information and serve as
7intermediary for the purposes of this section.

8For the purposes of this subsection, [an applicant may submit a
9copy of the information required under paragraphs (1) and (2)
10with an application for employment. Administrators shall
11maintain a copy of the required information and shall require
12applicants to produce the original document prior to
13employment.] an individual may submit a copy of the information 
14required under paragraphs (1) and (2) when applying to serve in 
15any capacity identified in subsection (a)(1), (2), (3), (4) or 
16(5). The person responsible for determining the employment or 
17acceptance of the individual to serve in such a capacity shall 
18maintain a copy of the required information and require the 
19individual to produce the original document prior to employment 
20or acceptance to serve in such capacity.

<-21* * *

22[(c) Grounds for denying employment.--

23(1) In no case shall an administrator hire an applicant
24where the department has verified that the applicant is named
25in the central register as the perpetrator of a founded
26report of child abuse committed within the five-year period
27immediately preceding verification pursuant to this section
28or is named in the central register as the perpetrator of a
29founded report for a school employee committed within the
30five-year period immediately preceding verification pursuant

1to this section.

2(2) In no case shall an administrator hire an applicant
3if the applicant's criminal history record information
4indicates the applicant has been convicted of one or more of
5the following offenses under Title 18 (relating to crimes and
6offenses) or an equivalent crime under Federal law or the law
7of another state:

8Chapter 25 (relating to criminal homicide).

9Section 2702 (relating to aggravated assault).

10Section 2709.1 (relating to stalking).

11Section 2901 (relating to kidnapping).

12Section 2902 (relating to unlawful restraint).

13Section 3121 (relating to rape).

14Section 3122.1 (relating to statutory sexual assault).

15Section 3123 (relating to involuntary deviate sexual
16intercourse).

17Section 3124.1 (relating to sexual assault).

18Section 3125 (relating to aggravated indecent assault).

19Section 3126 (relating to indecent assault).

20Section 3127 (relating to indecent exposure).

21Section 4302 (relating to incest).

22Section 4303 (relating to concealing death of child).

23Section 4304 (relating to endangering welfare of
24children).

25Section 4305 (relating to dealing in infant children).

26A felony offense under section 5902(b) (relating to
27prostitution and related offenses).

28Section 5903(c) or (d) (relating to obscene and other
29sexual materials and performances).

30Section 6301 (relating to corruption of minors).

1Section 6312 (relating to sexual abuse of children).

2The attempt, solicitation or conspiracy to commit any of
3the offenses set forth in this paragraph.

4(3) In no case shall an administrator hire an applicant
5if the applicant's criminal history record information
6indicates the applicant has been convicted of a felony
7offense under the act of April 14, 1972 (P.L.233, No.64),
8known as The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic
9Act, committed within the five-year period immediately
10preceding verification under this section.]

11(d) Prospective adoptive or foster parents.--With regard to
12prospective adoptive or prospective foster parents, the
13following shall apply:

14* * *

15[(3) Foster parents and any individual over 18 years of
16age residing in the home shall be required to submit the
17information set forth in subsection (b) every 24 months
18following approval for review by the foster family care
19agency in accordance with subsection (c).

20(4) Foster parents shall be required to report, within
2148 hours, any change in information required pursuant to
22subsection (b) about themselves and any individuals over the
23age of 18 years residing in the home for review by the foster
24family care agency in accordance with subsection (c).]

25(4.1) <- Foster parents shall be required to report an
26arrest or conviction for violation of an offense described in
27section 6344.3 (relating to grounds for denying employment or
28participation in program, activity or service) pursuant to
29section 6344.3. <-If a foster parent is arrested or convicted
30for an offense that would constitute grounds for denying

1employment under section 6344.3 (relating to grounds for
2denying employment or participation in program, activity or
3service), or is named as a perpetrator in a founded or
4indicated report of abuse, the foster parent shall provide
5the foster family care agency with written notice not later
6than 48 hours after the arrest, conviction or notification
7that the foster parent was named as a perpetrator of child
8abuse in the Statewide central register.

9* * *

10(6) In cases where foster parents knowingly fail to
11submit the material information required in [paragraphs (3),
12(4) and (5)] paragraph (5) and section 6344.4 (relating to 
13certification compliance) such that it would disqualify them
14as foster parents, the child shall immediately be removed
15from the home without a hearing.

16* * *

17(i) Time limit for certification.--The department shall
18comply with certification requests no later than [14] 28 days
19from the receipt of the request[.] and develop procedures to 
20comply with expedited certification requests. The department is 
21authorized to charge a fee of no more than $5, in addition to 
22the fee authorized in subsection (h), in order to expedite a 
23certification request. The department shall comply with 
24expedited certification requests no later than 14 days from the 
25receipt of the request.

26* * *

27[(k) Existing or transferred employees.--A person employed
28in child-care services on July 1, 2008, shall not be required to
29obtain the information required in subsection (b) as a condition
30of continued employment. A person who has once obtained the

1information required under subsection (b) may transfer to
2another child-care service established and supervised by the
3same organization and shall not be required to obtain additional
4reports before making the transfer.

5(l) Temporary employees under special programs.--The
6requirements of this section do not apply to employees of child-
7care services who meet all the following requirements:

8(1) They are under 21 years of age.

9(2) They are employed for periods of 90 days or less.

10(3) They are a part of a job development or job training
11program funded, in whole or in part, by public or private
12sources.

13Once employment of a person who meets these conditions extends
14beyond 90 days, all requirements of this section shall take
15effect.]

16(m) Provisional employees for limited periods.--
17Notwithstanding subsection (b), [administrators] employers may
18employ applicants on a provisional basis for a single period not
19to exceed 30 days or, for out-of-State applicants, a period of
2090 days, if all of the following conditions are met:

21(1) The applicant has applied for the information
22required under subsection (b) and the applicant provides a
23copy of the appropriate completed request forms to the
24[administrator] employer.

25(2) The [administrator] employer has no knowledge of
26information pertaining to the applicant which would
27disqualify him from employment pursuant to [subsection (c)]
28section 6344.3.

29(3) The applicant swears or affirms in writing that he
30is not disqualified from employment pursuant to [subsection

1(c)] section 6344.3.

2(4) If the information obtained pursuant to subsection
3(b) reveals that the applicant is disqualified from
4employment pursuant to [subsection (c)] section 6344.3, the
5applicant shall be immediately dismissed by the
6[administrator] employer.

7(5) The [administrator] employer requires that the
8applicant not be permitted to work alone with children and
9that the applicant work in the immediate vicinity of a
10permanent employee.

11(n) Confidentiality.--The information provided and compiled 
12under this section, including, but not limited to, the names, 
13addresses and telephone numbers of applicants and foster and 
14adoptive parents, shall be confidential and shall not be subject 
15to the act of [June 21, 1957 (P.L.390, No.212), referred to] 
16February 14, 2008 (P.L.6, No.3), known as the Right-to-Know Law. 
17This information shall not be released except as permitted by 
18the department through regulation.

19(o) Use of information.--A foster family care agency may not
20approve a prospective foster parent if the prospective foster
21parent or an individual [14] 18 years of age or older who
22resides for at least 30 days in a calendar year with the
23prospective foster parent meets either of the following:

24(1) Is named in the central register as the perpetrator
25of a founded report of child abuse committed within the five-
26year period immediately preceding verification pursuant to
27this section or is named in the central register as the
28perpetrator of a founded report for a school employee
29committed within the five-year period immediately preceding
30verification pursuant to this section.

1(2) Has been found guilty of an offense listed in
2[subsection (c)(2)] section 6344.3.

3(p) Use of information.--A prospective adoptive parent may
4not be approved if the prospective adoptive parent or an
5individual [14] 18 years of age or older who resides for at
6least 30 days in a calendar year with the prospective adoptive
7parent meets either of the following:

8(1) Is named in the central register as the perpetrator
9of a founded report of child abuse committed within the five-
10year period immediately preceding verification pursuant to
11this section or is named in the central register as the
12perpetrator of a founded report for a school employee
13committed within the five-year period immediately preceding
14verification pursuant to this section.

15(2) Has been found guilty of an offense listed in
16[subsection (c)(2)] section 6344.3.

17Section 3. Sections 6344.1(c) and 6344.2 of Title 23 are
18amended to read:

19§ 6344.1. Information relating to family day-care home
20residents.

21* * *

22(c) Effect on registration.--The department shall refuse to
23issue or renew a registration certificate or shall revoke a
24registration certificate if the family day-care home provider or
25individual 18 years of age or older who has resided in the home
26for at least 30 days in a calendar year:

27(1) is named in the central register on child abuse
28established under [Chapter 63 (relating to child protective
29services)] this chapter as the perpetrator of a founded
30report committed within the immediately preceding five-year

1period; or

2(2) has been convicted of an offense enumerated in
3section <-[6344(c)] 6344.3(a) [6344(c).] 6344.3 (relating to 
4grounds for denying employment or participation in program, 
5activity or service).,<- if the offense would constitute 
6grounds for denying employment based on the date of 
7expiration of the sentence for the offense.

8* * *

9§ 6344.2. Information relating to other persons having contact
10with children.

11(a) Applicability.--[This section applies to prospective
12employees applying to engage in occupations with a significant
13likelihood of regular contact with children, in the form of
14care, guidance, supervision or training. Such persons include
15social service workers, hospital personnel, mental health
16professionals, members of the clergy, counselors, librarians and
17doctors.] This section applies to a person applying for a paid 
18or unpaid position as a person responsible for the welfare of a 
19child.

20(b) Investigation.--Employers, administrators or supervisors
21or other person responsible for employment decisions or 
22selection of volunteers shall require an applicant to submit to
23all requirements set forth in section 6344(b) (relating to
24information relating to prospective child-care personnel). An
25employer, administrator, supervisor or other person responsible
26for employment decisions or selection of volunteers regarding an
27applicable prospective employee or volunteer under this section
28that intentionally fails to require the submissions before
29hiring that individual commits a misdemeanor of the third
30degree.

1(b.1) Exception.--A person responsible for the selection of
2volunteers shall require an applicable prospective volunteer to
3submit only the information required by section 6344(b)(1) and
4(2), if both of the following apply:

5(1) The position the prospective volunteer is applying
6for is unpaid.

7(2) The prospective volunteer has been a resident of
8Pennsylvania during the entirety of the previous ten-year
9period.

10This subsection shall not be construed to prohibit any
11organization from requiring prospective volunteers to submit the
12information required by section 6344(b)(3).

13(c) Grounds for denial.--Each applicant shall be subject to
14the requirements of section [6344(c)] 6344.3 (relating to 
15grounds for denial of employment or participation in program, 
16service or activity).

17(d) Departmental treatment of information.--Information 
18provided and compiled under this section by the department shall 
19be confidential and shall not be subject to the act of [June 21, 
201957 (P.L.390, No.212), referred to] February 14, 2008 (P.L.6, 
21No.3), known as the Right-to-Know Law. This information shall 
22not be released except as permitted by the department through 
23regulation. The department may charge a fee to conduct a 
24certification as required by section 6344(b)(2) in accordance 
25with the provisions of section 6344(h). The department shall 
26promulgate regulations necessary to carry out this subsection.

27Section 4. Title 23 is amended by adding sections to read:

28§ 6344.3. Grounds for denying employment or participation in
29program, activity or service.

30(a) Permanent ban.--No person subject to section 6344

1(relating to information relating to prospective child-care
2personnel) or 6344.2 (relating to information relating to other
3persons having contact with children) shall be employed or serve
4as a volunteer where the information under section 6344(b)
5indicates that the person has been identified as follows:

6(1) Convicted of an offense under one or more of the
7following provisions of 18 Pa.C.S. (relating to crimes and
8offenses):

9Chapter 25 (relating to criminal homicide).

10Section 2702 (relating to aggravated assault).

11Section 2709.1 (relating to stalking).

12Section 2901 (relating to kidnapping).

13Section 2902 (relating to unlawful restraint).

14Section 2910 (relating to luring a child into a motor
15vehicle or structure).

16Section 3121 (relating to rape).

17Section 3122.1 (relating to statutory sexual
18assault).

19Section 3123 (relating to involuntary deviate sexual
20intercourse).

21Section 3124.1 (relating to sexual assault).

22Section 3124.2 (relating to institutional sexual
23assault).

24Section 3125 (relating to aggravated indecent
25assault).

26Section 3126 (relating to indecent assault).

27Section 3127 (relating to indecent exposure).

28Section 3129 (relating to sexual intercourse with
29animal).

30Section 4302 (relating to incest).

1Section 4303 (relating to concealing death of child).

2Section 4304 (relating to endangering welfare of
3children).

4Section 4305 (relating to dealing in infant
5children).

6A felony offense under section 5902(b) (relating to
7prostitution and related offenses).

8Section 5903(c) or (d) (relating to obscene and other
9sexual materials and performances).

10Section 6301(a)(1)(ii) (relating to corruption of
11minors).

12Section 6312 (relating to sexual abuse of children).

13Section 6318 (relating to unlawful contact with
14minor).

15Section 6319 (relating to solicitation of minors to
16traffic drugs).

17Section 6320 (relating to sexual exploitation of
18children).

19(2) Convicted of an offense similar in nature to those
20crimes listed in paragraph (1) under the laws or former laws
21of the United States or one of its territories or
22possessions, another state, the District of Columbia, the
23Commonwealth of Puerto Rico or a foreign nation, or under a
24former law of this Commonwealth.

25(3) Identified in the central register as the
26perpetrator of a founded <-or indicated report of child abuse
27that involved the sexual abuse or exploitation of a child, or
28founded report for school employee <-or indicated report for
29school employee that involved sexual abuse or exploitation of
30a child.

1(b) Temporary ten-year ban.--

2(1) Subject to paragraph (2), no person subject to
3section 6344 or 6344.2 shall be employed or serve as a
4volunteer where the information under section 6344(b)
5indicates that the person has been convicted of a felony
6offense of the first, second or third degree for a crime
7other than those enumerated under subsection (a), where the
8victim is a child, or a felony offense under the act of April
914, 1972 (P.L.233, No.64), known as The Controlled Substance,
10Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act.

11(2) The person under paragraph (1) shall be eligible for
12prospective employment or service as a volunteer only if a
13period of ten years has elapsed from the date of expiration
14of the sentence for the offense.

15(c) Temporary five-year ban.--

16(1) Subject to paragraph (2), no person subject to
17section 6344 or 6344.2 shall be employed or serve as a
18volunteer where the information under section 6344(b)
19indicates that the person has been:

20(i) convicted of a misdemeanor of the first degree
21for a crime, other than those enumerated under subsection
22(a), where the victim is a child; or

23(ii) identified in the central register as a
24perpetrator of a founded report of child abuse other than
25sexual abuse or exploitation or a founded report for
26school employee other than sexual abuse or exploitation.

27(2) The person under paragraph (1) shall be eligible for
28prospective employment or service as a volunteer only if a
29period of five years has elapsed from the date of:

30(i) the expiration of the sentence for the offense

1under paragraph (1)(i); or

2(ii) identification under paragraph (1)(ii).

3(d) Noninterference with decisions.--Nothing in this section
4shall be construed to otherwise interfere with the ability of an
5employer or program, activity or service to make employment,
6discipline or termination decisions.

7(e) Transfer.--Any person who has once obtained the
8information required under this section may transfer or provide
9services to another subsidiary or branch established and
10supervised by the same organization and shall not be required to
11obtain additional reports before making the transfer.

<-12(f) Departmental form.--

13(1) The department shall develop a standardized form to
14be used by current and prospective employees and volunteers
15for the written reporting by current and prospective
16employees or volunteers of any arrest or conviction for an
17offense enumerated under subsection (a)(1) or (2).

18(2) The form shall provide a space in which a current or
19prospective employee or volunteer who has not been convicted
20of or arrested for any such offense will respond "no
21conviction" and "no arrest."

22(3) The form shall provide that failure to accurately
23report any arrest or conviction for an offense enumerated
24under subsection (a) shall subject the current or prospective
25employee or volunteer to criminal prosecution under 18
26Pa.C.S. § 4904 (relating to unsworn falsification to
27authorities).

28(4) The department shall publish the form on its
29publicly accessible Internet website and in the Pennsylvania
30Bulletin.

1(g) Compliance by certain persons employed or serving.--

2(1) By (the Legislative Reference Bureau shall insert
3here, in lieu of this statement, the date that is 90 days
4after the effective date of this subsection), all current
5employees and volunteers shall complete the form described in
6subsection (f), indicating whether or not they have been
7arrested or convicted of an offense enumerated under
8subsection (a)(1) or (2).

9(2) If, as required in paragraph (1), an employee or
10volunteer refuses to submit the form described in subsection
11(f), the person responsible for employment decisions or the
12administrator of a program, activity or service shall
13immediately require the employee or volunteer to submit the
14information set forth in section 6344(b).

15(h) Effect of new arrest or conviction.--

<-16(f) Written notice of new arrest, conviction or
17substantiated child abuse.--

18(1) If <-an arrest or conviction for an offense enumerated
19under subsection (a)(1) or (2) occurs after the effective
20date of this subsection <-an employee or volunteer subject to
21section 6344 or 6344.2 is arrested or convicted for an
22offense that would constitute grounds for denying employment
23or participation in a program, activity or service under this
24section, or is named as perpetrator in a founded or indicated
25report of child abuse, the employee or volunteer shall
26provide the administrator or designee with written notice
<-27utilizing the form provided for in subsection (f) not later
28than 72 hours after <-an arrest or conviction the arrest,
29conviction or notification that the person has been listed as
30a perpetrator of child abuse in the Statewide central

1register.

2(2) If the person responsible for employment decisions
3or the administrator of a program, activity or service has a
4reasonable belief that an employee or volunteer was arrested
<-5or has a conviction for an offense required to be reported
6under paragraph (1) or subsection (g)(1) and the employee or
7volunteer or prospective employee or volunteer <-or convicted
8for an offense that would constitute grounds for denying
9employment or participation in a program, activity or service
10under this section, or was named as perpetrator in a founded
11or indicated report of child abuse, or the employee or
12volunteer has provided notice as required under this section,
13the person responsible for employment decisions or
14administrator of a program, activity or service shall
15immediately require the employee or volunteer to submit
16current information as required under subsection 6344(b). The
17cost of the information set forth in subsection 6344(b) <-shall
18be borne by the employing entity or program, activity or
19service.

<-20(i) Effect of noncompliance.--

21(1) An employee or volunteer who willfully fails to
22disclose a conviction or an arrest for an offense enumerated
23under subsection (a)(1) or (2) shall be subject to discipline
24up to and including termination or denial of employment or
25volunteer position and may be subject to criminal prosecution
26under 18 Pa.C.S. § 4904.

27(2) An employee or volunteer who willfully fails to
28disclose a conviction of any other offense required to be
29reported by this section may be subject to discipline and may
30be subject to criminal prosecution under 18 Pa.C.S. § 4904.

<-1(g) Effect of noncompliance.--An employee or volunteer who
2willfully fails to disclose information required by subsection
3(f)(1) commits a misdemeanor of the third degree and shall be
4subject to discipline up to and including termination or denial
5of employment or volunteer position.

6§ 6344.4. Certification compliance.

7(a) Obtaining new certifications.--A person identified in
8section 6344(a)(1) (relating to information relating to
9prospective child-care personnel) or <-6344.2(a) 6344.2 (relating
10to information relating to other persons having contact with
11children) shall be required to obtain the certifications
12required <-in subsection 6344(b) by this chapter every 24 months.

13(b) Reports of changes.--Within 48 hours, foster parents
14shall report any change in information required pursuant to
15section 6344(b) about themselves and any individuals over 18
16years of age residing in their home for review by the foster
17family care agency in accordance with section 6344.

18Section 5. This act shall take effect in 60 days.

 

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