New Protections for Vulnerable Children and Adults to Become Law on July 1, 2010
Tuesday, June 08, 2010
HB 7069 was recently signed by the Governor. This new law substantially updates the requirements for the criminal background screening of workers and volunteers serving and supporting people with disabilities. Key changes include:
- Requiring that employers wait until screening and qualification procedures are complete before allowing workers to begin.
- Requiring employers to screen and qualify people who volunteer more than 10 hours a month. Current law exempts volunteers who assist less than 40 hours a month. Requiring that volunteers who work less than 10 hours a month be within the “line of sight” of a screened and qualified employee.
- Replacing current Level 1 (statewide name) screening requirements with Level 2 (nationwide fingerprint) screening requirements. Existing employees are required to be rescreened according to current law.
- Adding more crimes to the list of disqualifying criminal offenses.
- Requiring state agency heads personally decide and grant any exemptions from disqualification and ensure that individuals be at least three years past completion of their sentencing sanctions before becoming eligible for an exemption.
- Requiring AHCA to switch to electronic (vs. paper) fingerprints by August 1, 2010. Requiring other agencies to switch to electronic fingerprints no later than August 1, 2012, unless the agency adopts rules to implement the switch sooner.
- Allows agencies to request that FDLE retain employment applicant fingerprints and providing for rulemaking and implementation provisions for retention of fingerprints.
For more information, please contact Dana Farmer, Public Policy Coordinator at Disability Rights Florida, at 850-488-9071, etc. 226, or 800-342-0823, ext. 226.
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