HB 2535 allows individuals who are denied licensure, employment, or unsupervised access to children by the Children's Administration based upon the results of a background check to request an internal administrative review in writing using forms provided by the department, which must include the opportunity to submit evidence of the individual's rehabilitation and that allowing the individual unsupervised access to a child will not jeopardize the child's health or safety. This review process must include participation by Children's Administration management staff who are not in the direct chain of command with contracts staff and be completed within sixty days.
Administrative proceedings under RCW 74.15.130 and applicable timelines for filing may be stayed or extended as appropriate pending this review process. This subsection does not create any civil liability on the part of the state or any state agency, officer, employee, or agent based upon the operation or outcome of this review process except based upon gross negligence.
Additionally, HB 2535 directs DSHS to afford the same notice, right to an adjudicative proceeding, and evidentiary standards described in this section and under RCW 43.20A.205 to a person who has been denied employment with a contracted agency by the Children's Administration based on the result of a background check.
Substitute/the amended bill:
- Removes the ability of individuals denied licensure, employment, or unsupervised access to children by the Children's Administration based on the results of a background check to request an internal review.
- Removes the ability for individuals denied employment with a contracting agency of the Children's Administration based on the results of a background check to access an adjudicative proceeding.
- Requires the department to share background check information of a potential employee with a contracting agency after that employee provides written permission. If a contracting agency is provided that information and chooses to hire an individual that would be precluded from employment with the department based on a disqualifying crime or negative action, the contracting agency assumes all liability for the employment decision.
Replaces the Secretary's list with the Adoption and Safe Families act of 1997 as the list of disqualifying crimes for which the Children's Administration may deny a license or unsupervised access to children.
Human Services and Corrections Amendment: Technical changes were made to the bill (that is, they did not change the substance of the bill).