BILL ANALYSIS Ó SENATE COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC SAFETY Senator Loni Hancock, Chair S 2013-2014 Regular Session B 1 1 4 SB 114 (Pavley) As Introduced January 15, 2013 Hearing date: April 2, 2013 Welfare and Institutions Code AA:mc SEXUALLY EXPLOITED MINORS PILOT PROJECT - LOS ANGELES COUNTY HISTORY Source: Children's Advocacy Institute Prior Legislation: SB 1279 (Pavley) - Ch. 116, Stats. 2010 AB 499 (Swanson) - Ch. 359, Stats. 2008 Support: California Narcotic Officers' Association; California Police Chiefs Association; Inc.; California Public Defenders Association; California State Sheriffs' Association; The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Opposition:None known KEY ISSUE SHOULD THE SUNSET DATE FOR THE DISCRETIONARY PILOT PROJECT IN LOS ANGELES COUNTY REGARDING the development of a comprehensive, multidisciplinary model reflecting the best practices for the response of law enforcement and the criminal and juvenile justice systems to identify, assess and address the needs of commercially (More) SB 114 (Pavley) PageB sexually exploited children who have been arrested or detained by local law enforcement FOR PROSTITUTION CRIMES BE EXTENDED 3 YEARS? PURPOSE The purpose of this bill is to extend by 3 years the sunset date for the discretionary pilot project in Los Angeles County regarding the development of a comprehensive, multidisciplinary model reflecting the best practices for the response of law enforcement and the criminal and juvenile justice systems to identify, assess and address the needs of commercially sexually exploited children who have been arrested or detained by local law enforcement for prostitution crimes. Current law statutorily authorizes the County of Los Angeles, contingent upon local funding, to establish a pilot project to develop a comprehensive, replicative, multidisciplinary model to address the needs and effective treatment of commercially sexually exploited minors who have been arrested or detained by local law enforcement, as specified. (Welfare and Institutions Code ("WIC") § 18259.7.) Current law sunsets these provisions on January 1, 2014. (WIC § 18259.10.) This bill would extend this sunset three years to January 1, 2017. RECEIVERSHIP/OVERCROWDING CRISIS AGGRAVATION For the last several years, severe overcrowding in California's prisons has been the focus of evolving and expensive litigation relating to conditions of confinement. On May 23, 2011, the United States Supreme Court ordered California to reduce its prison population to 137.5 percent of design capacity within two years from the date of its ruling, subject to the right of the state to seek modifications in appropriate circumstances. (More) SB 114 (Pavley) PageC Beginning in early 2007, Senate leadership initiated a policy to hold legislative proposals which could further aggravate the prison overcrowding crisis through new or expanded felony prosecutions. Under the resulting policy known as "ROCA" (which stands for "Receivership/ Overcrowding Crisis Aggravation"), the Committee held measures which created a new felony, expanded the scope or penalty of an existing felony, or otherwise increased the application of a felony in a manner which could exacerbate the prison overcrowding crisis. Under these principles, ROCA was applied as a content-neutral, provisional measure necessary to ensure that the Legislature did not erode progress towards reducing prison overcrowding by passing legislation which would increase the prison population. ROCA necessitated many hard and difficult decisions for the Committee. In January of 2013, just over a year after the enactment of the historic Public Safety Realignment Act of 2011, the State of California filed court documents seeking to vacate or modify the federal court order to reduce the state's prison population to 137.5 percent of design capacity. The State submitted in part that the, ". . . population in the State's 33 prisons has been reduced by over 24,000 inmates since October 2011 when public safety realignment went into effect, by more than 36,000 inmates compared to the 2008 population . . . , and by nearly 42,000 inmates since 2006 . . . ." Plaintiffs, who oppose the state's motion, argue in part that, "California prisons, which currently average 150% of capacity, and reach as high as 185% of capacity at one prison, continue to deliver health care that is constitutionally deficient." In an order dated January 29, 2013, the federal court granted the state a six-month extension to achieve the 137.5 % prisoner population cap by December 31st of this year. The ongoing litigation indicates that prison capacity and related issues concerning conditions of confinement remain unsettled. However, in light of the real gains in reducing the prison population that have been made, although even greater reductions are required by the court, the Committee will review (More) SB 114 (Pavley) PageD each ROCA bill with more flexible consideration. The following questions will inform this consideration: whether a measure erodes realignment; whether a measure addresses a crime which is directly dangerous to the physical safety of others for which there is no other reasonably appropriate sanction; whether a bill corrects a constitutional infirmity or legislative drafting error; whether a measure proposes penalties which are proportionate, and cannot be achieved through any other reasonably appropriate remedy; and whether a bill addresses a major area of public safety or criminal activity for which there is no other reasonable, appropriate remedy. COMMENTS 1. Stated Need for This Bill; Author's Amendments The author states: This bill seeks to extend the sunset date on the Los Angeles County pilot program for sexually exploited youth. Currently, the program is set to sunset January 1, 2014. This bill would extend the sunset by three years. The author intends to amend this bill to also change the date in Welfare and Institutions Code section 18259.7(e) concerning a report to the Legislature from April 1, 2013, to April 1, 2016, to reflect the sunset change proposed by the bill. 2. Background In 2008, the Legislature passed AB 499 (Swanson) to authorize a pilot project in Alameda County intended "to encourage the development of a comprehensive, multidisciplinary model reflecting the best practices for the response of law (More) SB 114 (Pavley) PageE enforcement and the criminal and juvenile justice systems to identify and assess commercially sexually exploited children who have been arrested or detained by local law enforcement." In 2010, the Legislature passed a virtually (More) identical bill to pilot the same kind of project in Los Angeles. This bill extends the sunset on the Los Angeles project from January 1, 2014, to January 1, 2017. This sunset mirrors the sunset date for the Alameda County project. 3. Sexually Exploited Minors and the Criminal Justice System News articles over the last few years have highlighted the problem of child and teen prostitutes. For example, the Contra Costa Times in 2008 reported, "last year, of the 443 females arrested for prostitution in Oakland, 29 were juvenile cases. ? Meanwhile, police have only just started to quantify the problem and have been working to nail down firm numbers. ? Technology, the Internet, and cell phones have all changed the game. Pimps now use technology to sell girls as young as 11 or 12 on the street."<1> Similarly, an Oakland Tribune article from earlier this year described efforts to address child prostitutes as victims rather than criminal offenders: The majority of youngsters involved in the sex trade have been abused or neglected. Almost all the youngsters on the streets have run away from a home situation they find untenable. "A lot of these young girls are foster care youth and kids not connected to any family system," said Brian Bob, outreach coordinator for Covenant House, a nonprofit homeless shelter for youth that drives a van around Oakland five nights a week to provide food and, if they'll accept it, shelter to homeless youngsters. The vast majority of homeless girls Covenant House finds are prostitutes, he said. ---------------------- <1> Dunlap, Kamika, Cops Treating Child Prostitutes as Victims, Contra Costa Times, April 23, 2008. (More) SB 114 (Pavley) PageG . . . Alameda County Deputy District Attorney Sharmin Eshraghi Bock, who prosecutes human exploitation and trafficking cases, said many young girls who fall into prostitution have never known a loving family, so they mistake a pimp's affection and promises of material things for love. . . . Sexually Abused and Commercially Exploited Youth, an Oakland-based counseling program, last year surveyed 100 children ages 11 to 17 who had been peddled on the streets and referred for counseling. They found that 75 percent of the children had been raped at some time in their lives, 48 percent had been physically or sexually abused, and 70 percent had been assaulted while working the streets. Most respondents were runaways: Eighty-eight percent said they had run away from their family home or a foster care home. . . . Nola Brantley, coordinator of the SACEY counseling program, said the child prostitution epidemic in Oakland can be partially blamed on an overtaxed police system. SB 114 (Pavley) PageH "There are cases of severe child abuse in Oakland that will go uninvestigated and not prosecuted because of lack of manpower," Brantley said. "Some of these same children who were abused and nobody intervened will go on to become sexually exploited minors."<2> *************** --------------------------- <2> Barbara Grady, Many Child Prostitutes Seeking Shelter, Oakland Tribune, April 22, 2008.