Bill Title: Maintaining the safety of children who have been removed from a parent based on abuse, neglect, or abandonment.
Committee:Human Services Youth
Companion Bill: SB 5525
AN ACT Relating to maintaining the safety of children who have been removed from a parent based on abuse, neglect, or abandonment; amending RCW 13.34.145; reenacting and amending RCW 13.34.138; adding a new section to chapter 13.34 RCW; and creating new sections.
What the Bill says:
It olaces court in charge with continued oversight for extended periods of time prior to terminating the case after the child is returned to a birth parent. That time frame has a minimum of 6 months and may require random drug tests. It can be much longer: (b) If the court orders the child returned home, casework supervision by the department must continue for at least five years, at which time a review hearing must be held pursuant to RCW 13.34.138, and the court shall determine the need for continued intervention for cases involving: (i) Substance use disorder on the part of a parent that contributed to the removal of the child or that occurred during the dependency; or (ii) Conviction of the parent of a crime against children as defined in RCW 28A.400.322.
What the bill means:
It means that a parent who has lost the custodial authority of their child will have a longer more complicated oversight process to endure once they get their child back. The goal is to protect the child while reuniting the family.