(a) The department shall license a runaway and homeless youth shelter as a group home pursuant to this chapter. A runaway and homeless youth shelter shall meet all of the following requirements:
(1) The shelter shall offer short-term, 24-hour, nonmedical care and supervision and personal services to youth who voluntarily enter the shelter. As used in this paragraph, ?short-term? means no more than 21 consecutive days from the date of admission.
(2) The shelter shall serve homeless youth and runaway youth.
(A) ?Homeless youth? means a youth 12 to 17 years of age, inclusive, or 18 years of age if the youth is completing high school or its equivalent, who is in need of services and without a place of shelter.
(B) ?Runaway youth?means a youth 12 to 17 years of age, inclusive, or 18 years of age if the youth is completing high school or its equivalent, who absents himself or herself from home or place of legal residence without the permission of his or her family, legal guardian, or foster parent.
(3) The shelter shall have a maximum capacity of 25 youths.
(4) The shelter shall have a ratio of one staff person to every eight youths. For purposes of this paragraph, a volunteer may be counted in the staff-to-youth ratio if the volunteer has satisfied the same training requirements as a paid shelter staff member and other requirements set forth in regulations, and a paid shelter staff member is present during the time the volunteer is on duty.
(5) Bunk beds may be permitted in the shelter, but shall not consist of more than two tiers.
(6) The shelter shall be owned and operated on a nonprofit basis by a private nonprofit corporation, a nonprofit organization, or a public agency.
(b) Shelter staff shall, prior to admission into the shelter, determine if a youth poses a threat to himself or herself or others in the shelter. A youth may not be admitted into the shelter if it is determined that the youth poses such a threat.
(c) An assessment shall not be required for admission, but shelter staff shall assess youth served within 72 hours of admission to the shelter.
(d) Shelter staff shall assist youth served in obtaining emergency health-related services.
(e) The shelter shall establish procedures to assist youth in securing long-term stability that includes all of the following:
(1) Reconnecting the youth with his or her family, legal guardian, or nonrelative extended family members when possible to do so.
(2) Coordinating with appropriate individuals, local government agencies, or organizations to help foster youth secure a suitable foster care placement.
(f) The shelter shall ensure all homeless youth and runaway youth have fair and equal access to services, care, and treatment provided by the shelter, and are not subjected to discrimination or harassment on the basis of actual or perceived race, ethnic group identification, ancestry, national origin, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, mental or physical disability, or HIV status.
(g) Prior to employment or interaction with youth at a runaway and homeless youth shelter, all persons specified in subdivision (b) of Section 1522 shall complete a criminal record review pursuant to Section 1522 and a Child Abuse Central Index check pursuant to Section 1522.1.
(h)A runaway and homeless youth shelter shall collect and maintain all of the following information in a monthly report, in a format specified by the department, and make the report available to the department upon request:
(1) Total number of youth served per month.
(2) Age of each youth served.
(3) Length of stay of each youth served.
(4) Number of times a youth accesses the shelter and services at the shelter.
(i) Notwithstanding Section 1522.43, the department shall not require a runaway and homeless youth shelter to maintain a needs and services plan, as defined in Section 84001 of Title 22 of the California Code of Regulations, for a youth served. Nothing in this subdivision precludes the department from requiring a runaway and homeless youth shelter to maintain an assessment, as defined by the department, for youths served.
(j) The department may license a shelter pursuant to this section if the shelter is operating in two physical locations on or before January 1, 2013, with only one physical location providing overnight residential care, and the shelter meets the requirements of this section. If a shelter described in this subdivision is licensed pursuant to this section, the department shall permit the shelter to retain its two physical locations and issue a license for each physical location.
(k)A runaway and homeless youth shelter is not an eligible placement option pursuant to Sections 319, 361.2, 450, and 727 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
(l) A runaway and homeless youth shelter?s program shall not be eligible for a rate pursuant to Section 11462 of the Welfare and Institutions Code. This does not preclude a runaway and homeless youth shelter from receiving reimbursement for providing services to a foster youth as may be provided at the discretion of a county.
(m) On or before December 1, 2014, the department shall adopt regulations to implement this section, in consultation with interested parties, including representatives of provider organizations that serve homeless or runaway youth. The regulations developed pursuant to this subdivision shall be contained in the regulations for group homes found in Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 84000) of Division 6 of Title 22 of the California Code of Regulations.
(n) Notwithstanding the Administrative Procedure Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code), the department may implement the applicable provisions of this section by publishing information releases or similar instructions from the director until the regulations adopted by the department pursuant to subdivision (l) become effective.
(Added by Stats. 2013, Ch. 485, Sec. 2.)