BILL NUMBER: AB 1048	INTRODUCED
	BILL TEXT


INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Member Torrico

                        FEBRUARY 27, 2009

   An act to amend Section 1255.7 of the Health and Safety Code, and
to amend Section 271.5 of the Penal Code, relating to child
protection.



	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   AB 1048, as introduced, Torrico. Child protection: safe surrender.

   Existing law designates certain locations as safe-surrender sites
for the safe surrender of newborn children who are 72 hours of age or
younger.
   This bill would expand the scope of those provisions to apply to
children who are 30 days old or younger. The bill would permit a
local fire agency, upon the approval of the appropriate local
governing body of the agency, to designate a safe-surrender site. The
bill would specify certain circumstances in which a safe-surrender
site and its personnel have no liability for a surrendered child.
   By imposing new duties on local officials, the bill would impose a
state-mandated local program.
   The bill would specify that activities required by the bill shall
be funded by moneys available from the State Children's Trust Fund
and the California Children and Families Trust Fund, and would
require the department to apply for that funding to the California
Children and Families Commission. The bill would provide that General
Fund moneys shall not be used to fund the bill's provisions. The
bill would authorize the State Department of Social Services to
accept and expend other private funds from donations that are
received by the department, as specified.
   the bill would, on or before January 1, 2013, and on or before
January 1 of each subsequent year, contingent on certain conditions,
require the department to report to the Legislature specified
information pursuant to the act.
   The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local
agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the
state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that
reimbursement.
   This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates
determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state,
reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to these
statutory provisions.
   Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: yes.


THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  SECTION 1.  Section 1255.7 of the Health and Safety Code is amended
to read:
   1255.7.  (a) (1) For purposes of this section, "safe-surrender
site" means either of the following:
   (A) A location designated by the board of supervisors of a county
 or by a local fire agency, upon the approval of the appropriate
local governing body of the agency,  to be responsible for
accepting physical custody of a minor child who is  72 hours
  30 days  old or younger from a parent or
individual who has lawful custody of the child and who surrenders the
child pursuant to Section 271.5 of the Penal Code.  Before
designating a location as a safe-surrender site pursuant to this
subdivision, the designatory entity shall consult with the governing
body of a city, if the site is within the city limits, and with
representatives of a   fire department and a  
child welfare agency that m   ay provide services to a child
who is surrendered at the site, if that location is selected. 
   (B) A location within a public or private hospital that is
designated by that hospital to be responsible for accepting physical
custody of a minor child who is  72 hours   30
days  old or younger from a parent or individual who has lawful
custody of the child and who surrenders the child pursuant to Section
271.5 of the Penal Code.
   (2) For purposes of this section, "parent" means a birth parent of
a minor child who is  72 hours   30 days 
old or younger.
   (3) For purposes of this section, "personnel" means  any
  a  person who is an officer or employee of a
safe-surrender site or who has staff privileges at the site.
   (4) A hospital and  any   a 
safe-surrender site designated by the county board of supervisors
 or by a local fire agency, upon the approval of the appropriate
local governing body of the agency,  shall post a sign utilizing
a statewide logo that has been adopted by the State Department of
Social Services that notifies the public of the location where a
minor child  72 hours   30 days  old or
younger may be safely surrendered pursuant to this section.
   (b)  Any personnel   Personnel  on duty
at a safe-surrender site shall accept physical custody of a minor
child  72 hours   30 days  old or younger
pursuant to this section if a parent or other individual having
lawful custody of the child voluntarily surrenders physical custody
of the child to personnel who are on duty at the safe-surrender site.
Safe-surrender site personnel shall ensure that a qualified person
does all of the following:
   (1) Places a coded, confidential ankle bracelet on the child.
   (2) Provides, or makes a good faith effort to provide, to the
parent or other individual surrendering the child a copy of a unique,
coded, confidential ankle bracelet identification in order to
facilitate reclaiming the child pursuant to subdivision (f). However,
possession of the ankle bracelet identification, in and of itself,
does not establish parentage or a right to custody of the child.
   (3) Provides, or makes a good faith effort to provide, to the
parent or other individual surrendering the child a medical
information questionnaire, which may be declined, voluntarily filled
out and returned at the time the child is surrendered, or later
filled out and mailed in the envelope provided for this purpose. This
medical information questionnaire shall not require  any
 identifying information about the child or the parent or
individual surrendering the child, other than the identification code
provided in the ankle bracelet placed on the child. Every
questionnaire provided pursuant to this section shall begin with the
following notice in no less than 12-point type:
   NOTICE: THE BABY YOU HAVE BROUGHT IN TODAY MAY HAVE SERIOUS
MEDICAL NEEDS IN THE FUTURE THAT WE DON'T KNOW ABOUT TODAY. SOME
ILLNESSES, INCLUDING CANCER, ARE BEST TREATED WHEN WE KNOW ABOUT
FAMILY MEDICAL HISTORIES. IN ADDITION, SOMETIMES RELATIVES ARE NEEDED
FOR LIFE-SAVING TREATMENTS. TO MAKE SURE THIS BABY WILL HAVE A
HEALTHY FUTURE, YOUR ASSISTANCE IN COMPLETING THIS QUESTIONNAIRE
FULLY IS ESSENTIAL. THANK YOU.
   (c) Personnel of a safe-surrender site that has physical custody
of a minor child pursuant to this section shall ensure that a medical
screening examination and any necessary medical care is provided to
the minor child. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the
consent of the parent or other relative shall not be required to
provide that care to the minor child.
   (d) (1) As soon as possible, but in no event later than 48 hours
after the physical custody of a child has been accepted pursuant to
this section, personnel of the safe-surrender site that has physical
custody of the child shall notify child protective services or a
county agency providing child welfare services pursuant to Section
16501 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, that the safe-surrender
site has physical custody of the child pursuant to this section. In
addition,  any  medical information pertinent to the
child's health, including, but not limited to, information obtained
pursuant to the medical information questionnaire described in
paragraph (3) of subdivision (b) that has been received by or is in
the possession of the safe-surrender site shall be provided to that
child protective services or county agency.
   (2) Any personal identifying information that pertains to a parent
or individual who surrenders a child that is obtained pursuant to
the medical information questionnaire is confidential and shall be
exempt from disclosure by the child protective services or county
agency under the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5
(commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the
Government Code).  Any personal   Personal 
identifying information that pertains to a parent or individual who
surrenders a child shall be redacted from any medical information
provided to child protective services or the county agency providing
child welfare services.
   (e) Child protective services or the county agency providing child
welfare services pursuant to Section 16501 of the Welfare and
Institutions Code shall assume temporary custody of the child
pursuant to Section 300 of the Welfare and Institutions Code
immediately upon receipt of notice under subdivision (d). Child
protective services or the county agency providing child welfare
services pursuant to Section 16501 of the Welfare and Institutions
Code shall immediately investigate the circumstances of the case and
file a petition pursuant to Section 311 of the Welfare and
Institutions Code. Child protective services or the county agency
providing child welfare services pursuant to Section 16501 of the
Welfare and Institutions Code shall immediately notify the State
Department of Social Services of each child to whom this subdivision
applies upon taking temporary custody of the child pursuant to
Section 300 of the Welfare and Institutions Code. As soon as
possible, but no later than 24 hours after temporary custody is
assumed, child protective services or the county agency providing
child welfare services pursuant to Section 16501 of the Welfare and
Institutions Code shall report all known identifying information
concerning the child, except personal identifying information
pertaining to the parent or individual who surrendered the child, to
the California Missing Children Clearinghouse and to the National
Crime Information Center.
   (f) If, prior to the filing of a petition under subdivision (e), a
parent or individual who has voluntarily surrendered a child
pursuant to this section requests that the safe-surrender site that
has physical custody of the child pursuant to this section return the
child and the safe-surrender site still has custody of the child,
personnel of the safe-surrender site shall either return the child to
the parent or individual or contact a child protective agency if any
personnel at the safe-surrender site knows or reasonably suspects
that the child has been the victim of child abuse or neglect. The
voluntary surrender of a child pursuant to this section is not in and
of itself a sufficient basis for reporting child abuse or neglect.
The terms "child abuse," "child protective agency," "mandated
reporter," "neglect," and "reasonably suspects" shall be given the
same meanings as in Article 2.5 (commencing with Section 11164) of
Title 1 of Part 4 of the Penal Code.
   (g) Subsequent to the filing of a petition under subdivision (e),
if within 14 days of the voluntary surrender described in this
section, the parent or individual who surrendered custody returns to
claim physical custody of the child, the child welfare agency shall
verify the identity of the parent or individual, conduct an
assessment of his or her circumstances and ability to parent, and
request that the juvenile court dismiss the petition for dependency
and order the release of the child, if the child welfare agency
determines that none of the conditions described in subdivisions (a)
to (d), inclusive, of Section 319 of the Welfare and Institutions
Code currently exist.
   (h) A safe-surrender site, or  personnel of the
safe-surrender site,   the personnel of a safe-surrender
site, shall not have liability of any kind for a surrendered child
prior to taking actual physical custody of the child. A
safe-surrender site, or personnel of the safe-surrender site, 
that accepts custody of a surrendered child pursuant to this section
shall not be subject to civil, criminal, or administrative liability
for accepting the child and caring for the child in the good faith
belief that action is required or authorized by this section,
including, but not limited to, instances where the child is older
than  72 hours   30 days  or the parent or
individual surrendering the child did not have lawful physical
custody of the child.  A safe-surrender site, or the personnel of
a safe-surrender site, shall not be subject to civil, criminal, or
administrative liability for a surrendered child prior to the time
that the site or its personnel know, or should know, that the child
has been surrendered.  This subdivision does not confer immunity
from liability for personal injury or wrongful death, including, but
not limited to, injury resulting from medical malpractice.
   (i) (1) In order to encourage assistance to persons who
voluntarily surrender physical custody of a child pursuant to this
section or Section 271.5 of the Penal Code, no person who, without
compensation and in good faith, provides assistance for the purpose
of effecting the safe surrender of a minor  72 hours
  30 days  old or younger shall be civilly liable
for injury to or death of the minor child as a result  of any
 of his or her acts or omissions. This immunity does not
apply to  any   an  act or omission
constituting gross negligence, recklessness, or willful misconduct.
   (2) For purposes of this section, "assistance" means transporting
the minor child to the safe-surrender site as a person with lawful
custody, or transporting or accompanying the parent or person with
lawful custody at the request of that parent or person to effect the
safe surrender, or performing any other act in good faith for the
purpose of effecting the safe surrender of the minor.
   (j) For purposes of this section, "lawful custody" means physical
custody of a minor  72 hours   30 days  old
or younger accepted by a person from a parent of the minor, who the
person believes in good faith is the parent of the minor, with the
specific intent and promise of effecting the safe surrender of the
minor.
   (k) Any identifying information that pertains to a parent or
individual who surrenders a child pursuant to this section, that is
obtained as a result of the questionnaire described in paragraph (3)
of subdivision (b) or in any other manner, is confidential, shall be
exempt from disclosure under the California Public Records Act
(Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1
of the Government Code), and shall not be disclosed by any personnel
of a safe-surrender site that accepts custody of a child pursuant to
this section. 
   (l) The activities required by this section shall be funded by
available moneys from the State Children's Trust Fund, established
pursuant to Section 18969 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, and
from the California Children and Families Trust Fund, established
pursuant to Section 130105. The State Department of Social Services
shall apply to the California Children and Families Commission for
funding. General Fund moneys shall not be used to fund this section.
The department may also accept and expend private donations that are
received by the department for the purposes of this section. 
  SEC. 2.  Section 271.5 of the Penal Code is amended to read:
   271.5.  (a) No parent or other individual having lawful custody of
a minor child  72 hours   30 days  old or
younger may be prosecuted for a violation of Section 270, 270.5, 271,
or 271a if he or she voluntarily surrenders physical custody of the
child to personnel on duty at a safe-surrender site.
   (b) For purposes of this section, "safe-surrender site" has the
same meaning as defined in paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of
Section 1255.7 of the Health and Safety Code.
   (c) (1) For purposes of this section, "lawful custody" has the
same meaning as defined in subdivision (j) of Section 1255.7 of the
Health and Safety Code.
   (2) For purposes of this section, "personnel" has the same meaning
as defined in paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 1255.7 of
the Health and Safety Code.
  SEC. 3.  On or before January 1, 2013, and, contingent upon
availability of sufficient funding or resources for this purpose, on
or before January 1 of each subsequent year, the State Department of
Social Services shall report to the Legislature regarding the effect
of this act, including, but not limited to, all of the following
information:
   (a) The number of children one year of age or younger who are
found abandoned, dead or alive, in the state for each year in which
reporting is required under this act.
   (b) The number of infants surrendered pursuant to this act, with
their approximate age.
   (c) The number of medical history questionnaires completed in
those cases.
   (d) The number of instances in which a parent or other person
having lawful custody seeks to reclaim custody of a surrendered
child, both during and after the initial period following surrender,
and the outcome of those cases.
   (e) Whether a person seeking to reclaim custody is the individual
who surrendered the child.
   (f) The number of children surrendered pursuant to this act who
show signs of neglect or abuse and the disposition of those cases.
   (g) The number of parents or legal guardians eventually located
and contacted by social workers.
  SEC. 4.  If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this
act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local
agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant
to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of
the Government Code.