Bill Text: AZ SB1091 | 2010 | Forty-ninth Legislature 2nd Regular | Chaptered

Bill Title: CPS workers; investigations; group homes

Spectrum: Bipartisan Bill

Status: (Passed) 2010-04-26 - Governor Signed [SB1091 Detail]

Download: Arizona-2010-SB1091-Chaptered.html




Senate Engrossed




State of Arizona


Forty-ninth Legislature

Second Regular Session










Amending section 8-802, Arizona Revised Statutes; relating to child protective services.





Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:

Section 1.  Section 8-802, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:

START_STATUTE8-802.  Child protective services worker; fingerprint clearance cards; powers and duties; alteration of files; violation; classification

A.  The department of economic security shall employ child protective services workers.  All persons who are employed as child protective services workers shall have a valid fingerprint clearance card that is issued pursuant to section 41‑1758.07 or shall apply for a fingerprint clearance card within seven working days of employment.  A child protective services worker shall certify on forms that are provided by the department of economic security and that are notarized whether the worker is awaiting trial on or has ever been convicted of any of the criminal offenses listed in section 41‑1758.07, subsections B and C in this state or similar offenses in another state or jurisdiction.

B.  The department may cooperate with county agencies and community social services agencies to achieve the purposes of this chapter.

C.  A child protective services worker shall:

1.  Promote the safety and protection of children.

2.  Accept, screen and assess reports of abuse or neglect:

(a)  Pursuant to section 8‑817.

(b)  In level I residential treatment centers or in level II or Level III behavioral health residential agencies that are licensed by the department of health services.

3.  Receive reports of dependent, abused or abandoned children and be prepared to provide temporary foster care for these children on a twenty‑four hour basis.

4.  Receive from any source oral or written information regarding a child who may be in need of protective services.  A worker shall not interview a child without the prior written consent of the parent, guardian or custodian of the child unless either:

(a)  The child initiates contact with the worker.

(b)  The child who is interviewed is the subject of or is the sibling of or living with the child who is the subject of an abuse or abandonment investigation pursuant to paragraph 5, subdivision (b) of this subsection.

(c)  The interview is conducted pursuant to the terms of the protocols established pursuant to section 8-817.

5.  After the receipt of any report or information pursuant to paragraph 2, 3 or 4 of this subsection, immediately do both of the following:

(a)  Notify the municipal or county law enforcement agency.

(b)  Make a prompt and thorough investigation of the nature, extent and cause of any condition that would tend to support or refute the allegation that the child should be adjudicated dependent and the name, age and condition of other children in the home.  A criminal conduct allegation shall be investigated according to the protocols established pursuant to section 8‑817 with the appropriate municipal or county law enforcement agency as provided in section 8‑817.

6.  Take a child into temporary custody as provided in section 8‑821.  Law enforcement officers shall cooperate with the department to remove a child from the custody of the child's parents, guardian or custodian when necessary.

7.  After investigation, evaluate conditions created by the parents, guardian or custodian that would support or refute the allegation that the child should be adjudicated dependent.  The child protective services worker shall then determine whether any child is in need of protective services.

8.  Offer to the family of any child who is found to be a child in need of protective services those services that are designed to correct unresolved problems that would indicate a reason to adjudicate the child dependent.

9.  Submit a written report of the worker's investigation to:

(a)  The department's case management information system within a reasonable time period that does not exceed forty-five days after receipt of the initial information except as provided in section 8‑811.  If the investigation involves allegations regarding a child who at the time of the alleged incident was in the custody of a child welfare agency licensed by the department of economic security under this title, a copy of the report and any additional investigative or other related reports shall be provided to the board of directors of the agency or to the administrative head of the agency unless the incident is alleged to have been committed by the person. The department shall excise all information with regard to the identity of the source of the reports.

(b)  The appropriate court forty‑eight hours before a dependency hearing pursuant to a petition of dependency or within twenty‑one days after a petition of dependency is filed, whichever is earlier.  On receipt of the report the court shall make the report available to all parties and counsel.

10.  Accept a child into voluntary placement pursuant to section 8‑806.

11.  Make a good faith effort to promptly obtain and abide by court orders that restrict or deny custody, visitation or contact by a parent or other person in the home with the child.  As part of the good faith effort, the child protective services worker shall ask the parent, guardian or custodian under investigation if a current court order exists.

D.  A child shall not remain in temporary custody for a period exceeding seventy‑two hours, excluding Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, unless a dependency petition is filed.  If a petition is not filed and the child is released to the child's parent, guardian or custodian, the worker shall file a report of removal with the central registry within seventy‑two hours of the child's release.  The report shall include:

1.  The dates of previous referrals, investigations or temporary custody.

2.  The dates on which other children in the family have been taken into temporary custody.

E.  The department shall provide child protective services workers who investigate allegations of abuse and neglect with training in forensic interviewing and processes, the protocols established pursuant to section 8‑817 and relevant law enforcement procedures.  All child protective services workers shall be trained in their duty to protect the legal rights of children and families from the time of the initial contact through treatment. The training shall include knowledge of a child's rights as a victim of crime.  The training for child protective services workers shall also include instruction on the legal rights of parents and the requirements for legal search and seizure by law enforcement officers.

F.  In conducting an investigation pursuant to this section, if the worker is made aware that an allegation of abuse or neglect may also have been made in another state, the worker shall contact the appropriate agency in that state to attempt to determine the outcome of any investigation of that allegation.

G.  Any person who alters a client file for the purpose of fraud or misrepresentation is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor. END_STATUTE