Bill Text: TX HB1536 | 2019-2020 | 86th Legislature | Comm Sub


Bill Title: Relating to trauma-informed care for children in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services, trauma-informed care training for certain department employees, and the establishment of the Trauma-Informed Care Task Force.

Spectrum: Bipartisan Bill

Status: (Introduced) 2019-05-09 - Placed on General State Calendar [HB1536 Detail]

Download: Texas-2019-HB1536-Comm_Sub.html
  86R21458 MM-F
 
  By: Miller, Raymond, Parker, Davis of Harris, H.B. No. 1536
      Zerwas, et al.
 
  Substitute the following for H.B. No. 1536:
 
  By:  Meza C.S.H.B. No. 1536
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to trauma-informed care for children in the
  conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective
  Services, trauma-informed care training for certain department
  employees, and the establishment of the Trauma-Informed Care Task
  Force.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 264.015, Family Code, is amended by
  amending Subsection (a) and adding Subsections (a-1) and (a-2) to
  read as follows:
         (a)  The department shall require [include training in
  trauma-informed programs and services in any training the
  department provides to] foster parents, adoptive parents, and
  kinship caregivers to receive training in trauma-informed care[,
  department caseworkers, and department supervisors].  The
  trauma-informed training required by this subsection:
               (1)  must use a research-supported or evidence-based
  model;
               (2)  must meet the requirements of the training
  required under Sections 40.105 and 40.108, Human Resources Code;
  and
               (3)  may include faith-based programs that meet the
  criteria described by Subdivisions (1) and (2).
         (a-1)  The department shall pay for the training provided
  under Subsection (a) [this subsection] with gifts, donations, and
  grants and any federal money available through the Fostering
  Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 (Pub.
  L. No. 110-351). The department shall annually evaluate the
  effectiveness of the training provided under Subsection (a) [this
  subsection] to ensure progress toward a trauma-informed system of
  care.
         (a-2)  The department may exempt from the training required
  by Subsection (a) any individual who submits proof to the
  department that the individual has received training that meets the
  requirements of Sections 40.105 and 40.108, Human Resources Code.
         SECTION 2.  Chapter 40, Human Resources Code, is amended by
  adding Subchapter D to read as follows:
  SUBCHAPTER D. TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE
         Sec. 40.101.  DEFINITION OF TRAUMA AND TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE.
  (a)  Except as provided by Subsection (b), in this subchapter:
               (1)  "Trauma" means the range of maltreatment,
  interpersonal violence, abuse, assault, and neglect experiences
  encountered by children, adolescents, and adults, including:
                     (A)  physical, sexual, and emotional abuse;
                     (B)  interpersonal or relational trauma from
  abuse, neglect, and maltreatment;
                     (C)  community, peer, and school-based assault,
  molestation, and severe bullying;
                     (D)  severe physical, medical, and emotional
  neglect;
                     (E)  witnessing domestic violence; and
                     (F)  the impact of abrupt separation, serious and
  pervasive disruptions in caregiving, and traumatic loss.
               (2)  "Trauma-informed care," "trauma-informed
  program," or "trauma-informed service" means care or a program or
  service that is person-centered, avoids re-traumatization, and
  takes into account:
                     (A)  the impact that traumatic experiences have on
  an individual's brain development and cognitive, emotional,
  physical, and behavioral functioning;
                     (B)  the symptoms of trauma;
                     (C)  an individual's personal trauma history;
                     (D)  an individual's trauma triggers; and
                     (E)  methods for addressing the traumatized
  individual's needs by helping the individual feel safe, build
  relationships, learn to regulate emotions, and build resiliency.
         (b)  The definitions of "trauma" and "trauma-informed care" 
  under Subsection (a) do not apply if the commissioner adopts rules
  defining those terms.
         (c)  Not later than December 1, 2019, the commissioner of the
  department shall adopt rules defining "trauma" and
  "trauma-informed care" for purposes of this subchapter using a
  negotiated rulemaking process under Chapter 2008, Government Code.  
  In adopting rules under this subsection, the commissioner shall
  consider the definitions under Subsection (a).  This subsection
  expires September 1, 2021.
         Sec. 40.102.  TRAUMA-INFORMED SYSTEM OF CARE.  (a)  The
  department shall ensure that the child protective services division
  of the department transitions to a trauma-informed system of care
  that ensures that participants in the system:
               (1)  recognize the widespread impact of trauma and
  understand the potential paths for recovery;
               (2)  recognize the signs and symptoms of trauma in
  clients, families, staff, and others involved with the system;
               (3)  respond by fully integrating knowledge about
  trauma and trauma-informed care into policies, procedures,
  practices, and training, including the training required under
  Sections 40.105 through 40.108; and
               (4)  seek to actively resist re-traumatization.
         (b)  This section may not be construed to:
               (1)  create a legal presumption against a parent in:
                     (A)  an investigation conducted by the department
  under Chapter 261, Family Code; or
                     (B)  a suit affecting the parent-child
  relationship under Chapter 262, Family Code; or
               (2)  relieve the department from any burden of proof
  required in a suit affecting the parent-child relationship under
  Chapter 262, Family Code.
         Sec. 40.103.  REGIONAL COORDINATORS. (a)  The department
  shall appoint at least two trauma-informed care coordinators in
  each department region who have substantial expertise and
  experience in at least one trauma-informed care model.
         (b)  In appointing trauma-informed care coordinators, the
  department shall ensure, if possible, that each coordinator
  appointed in a region represents a different trauma-informed care
  model.
         (c)  A trauma-informed care coordinator shall:
               (1)  organize and offer trauma-informed care training;
  and
               (2)  offer coaching and support regarding
  trauma-informed care within the coordinator's region.
         Sec. 40.104.  TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE TASK FORCE.  (a) In this
  section, "task force" means the Trauma-Informed Care Task Force
  created under this section.
         (b)  The department shall establish the Trauma-Informed Care
  Task Force. The commissioner shall designate a member of the task
  force as the presiding officer of the task force. The task force is
  composed of:
               (1)  nine members of the public appointed by the
  commissioner who work in the field of trauma-informed care;
               (2)  one member of the house of representatives
  appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives; and
               (3)  one member of the senate appointed by the
  lieutenant governor.
         (c)  A vacancy on the task force shall be filled in the same
  manner as the original appointment.
         (d)  A member of the task force is not entitled to
  compensation or reimbursement of expenses incurred in performing
  duties related to the task force.
         (e)  The department shall provide reasonably necessary
  administrative and technical support to the task force.
         (f)  The department may accept on behalf of the task force a
  gift, grant, or donation from any source to carry out the purposes
  of the task force.
         (g)  The task force shall meet at least quarterly at the call
  of the presiding officer. The task force may meet at other times as
  determined by the presiding officer.
         (h)  The task force shall assist the department in
  implementing the transition to a trauma-informed system of care for
  children in the department's conservatorship as described by
  Section 40.102, by:
               (1)  leveraging outside resources and coordinating
  state resources toward implementing trauma-informed care for
  children who are:
                     (A)  in the department's conservatorship; or
                     (B)  receiving family-based safety services;
               (2)  ensuring that all department employees who
  interact with or make decisions on behalf of children in the
  department's conservatorship receive appropriate trauma-informed
  care training; and
               (3)  adopting trauma-informed practices and policies
  to reduce:
                     (A)  the number of placement changes for children
  in the department's conservatorship;
                     (B)  foster parent turnover;
                     (C)  the number of children in the department's
  conservatorship who are unable to be placed with adoptive parents;
                     (D)  caseworker attrition;
                     (E)  the number of children in the department's
  conservatorship who run away from the child's placement;
                     (F)  the amount of psychotropic medications
  prescribed to children in the department's conservatorship;
                     (G)  the number of children in the department's
  conservatorship whose level of care increases;
                     (H)  the number of children in the department's
  conservatorship who are placed in psychiatric facilities or
  residential treatment centers;
                     (I)  the number of young adults who have
  difficulty functioning independently after transitioning out of
  the department's conservatorship; and
                     (J)  the amount of money that the state spends on
  services for adults who:
                           (i)  did not receive trauma-informed care
  when they were in the department's conservatorship; and
                           (ii)  are unable to function independently
  as adults or are incarcerated or homeless.
         (i)  Chapter 2110, Government Code, does not apply to the
  task force.
         (j)  Not later than December 1 of each even-numbered year,
  the task force shall report to the legislature regarding the
  department's progress toward transitioning to a trauma-informed
  system of care and make recommendations for any legislative action.
         (k)  The task force is abolished and this section expires
  September 1, 2023.
         Sec. 40.105.  TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE TRAINING: DEPARTMENT
  EMPLOYEES. The department shall ensure that each department
  employee who interacts with or makes decisions on behalf of a child
  in the department's conservatorship receives trauma-informed care
  training that provides the employee with a foundational level of
  understanding of:
               (1)  symptoms of trauma and adverse childhood
  experiences;
               (2)  the impact that trauma has on a child, including
  how trauma may affect a child's brain development and cognitive,
  emotional, physical, and behavioral functioning;
               (3)  attachment and how a lack of attachment may affect
  a child;
               (4)  the role that trauma-informed care and services,
  including strategies and interventions that build connection,
  provide physical and psychological safety, and help the child learn
  to regulate emotions, can have in helping a child build resiliency
  and overcome the effects of trauma and adverse childhood
  experiences;
               (5)  the importance of screening children for trauma
  and the risk of mislabeling and inappropriate treatment of children
  without proper screening;
               (6)  the potential for re-traumatization of children in
  the department's conservatorship;
               (7)  the importance of working with other systems to
  help a child receive trauma-informed care;
               (8)  the impact an adult's traumatic experiences can
  have on the adult's interactions with a child and ways to avoid
  secondary trauma; and
               (9)  the concepts, strategies, and skills most
  appropriate for each person's role in a child's life.
         Sec. 40.106.  TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE TRAINING: ADMINISTRATIVE
  EMPLOYEES.  (a)  In addition to the training required by Section
  40.105, the department shall ensure that each department employee
  who makes decisions on behalf of the department regarding the
  department's organization, policy goals, and funding receives
  training that teaches the employee to:
               (1)  support staff who provide trauma-informed care to
  children and families;
               (2)  create organizational change to reduce
  traumatizing practices and policies;
               (3)  identify and address practices or policies that
  have a disproportionate or disparate impact on children who have
  experienced trauma within diverse populations; and
               (4)  minimize secondary trauma for staff.
         (b)  The total amount of training under Section 40.105 and
  this section must be at least eight hours.
         Sec. 40.107.  TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE TRAINING: REGIONAL
  DIRECTORS AND SUPERVISORS. (a) In addition to the training
  required by Section 40.105, the department shall ensure that each
  department employee who serves as a regional director or mid-level
  supervisor receives training that gives the employee the ability to
  apply and teach to others how to:
               (1)  understand trauma-induced behaviors that a child
  who has experienced trauma may exhibit;
               (2)  recognize trauma triggers;
               (3)  identify practices and policies that may
  re-traumatize children;
               (4)  understand appropriate treatments and
  non-pharmacological interventions for children who have
  experienced trauma;
               (5)  work with other staff, organizations, and
  individuals to create a trauma-informed system of care;
               (6)  learn and practice strategies that promote a
  child's healing, including building connections, providing
  physical and psychological safety, and helping the child learn to
  regulate emotions;
               (7)  advocate, as appropriate, on behalf of a child to
  ensure that the child has access to trauma-informed care;
               (8)  effectively model trauma-informed strategies with
  clients, as appropriate; and
               (9)  recognize the effects of secondary trauma and the
  need for self-care.
         (b)  The total amount of training under Section 40.105 and
  this section must be at least eight hours.
         (c)  The department shall provide to employees described by
  Subsection (a) access to ongoing coaching regarding implementing
  and using trauma-informed care principles to respond to the needs
  of a child in the department's conservatorship.
         Sec. 40.108.  TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE TRAINING: CASEWORKERS
  AND INVESTIGATORS. (a) In addition to the training required by
  Section 40.105, the department shall ensure that each department
  employee who serves as a caseworker or investigator receives
  training that uses a research-supported or evidence-based
  interactive and problem-solving model to give employees the ability
  to:
               (1)  understand trauma-induced behaviors that a child
  who has experienced trauma may exhibit;
               (2)  recognize trauma triggers;
               (3)  identify practices that may re-traumatize
  children;
               (4)  understand appropriate treatments and
  non-pharmacological interventions for children who have
  experienced trauma;
               (5)  learn and practice strategies and interventions
  that promote a child's healing, including building connections,
  providing physical and psychological safety, and helping the child
  learn to regulate emotions;
               (6)  through case study, scripted practice, role-play
  activities, analysis, or facilitated discussion about experiences,
  gain mastery of strategies and interventions that guide daily
  interactions with a child who has experienced trauma;
               (7)  collaborate with other professionals or
  caregivers to identify solutions to issues that arise because of a
  child's trauma; and
               (8)  recognize effects of secondary trauma and the need
  for self-care.
         (b)  The total amount of training under Section 40.105 and
  this section must be at least 24 hours.
         (c)  The department shall provide to employees described by
  Subsection (a) access to ongoing coaching regarding implementing
  and using trauma-informed care principles to respond to the needs
  of a child in the department's conservatorship.
         Sec. 40.109.  SPECIFIC MODEL NOT REQUIRED. The training
  requirements of this subchapter do not require the use of any
  specific training model or program.
         SECTION 3.  Section 264.015(b), Family Code, is repealed.
         SECTION 4.  The Department of Family and Protective Services
  shall provide the training required by Subchapter D, Chapter 40,
  Human Resources Code, as added by this Act, to the employees in two
  or three department regions each fiscal year. The department shall
  complete the training in all of the department's regions not later
  than September 1, 2023.
         SECTION 5.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2019.
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