An act to amend Sections 4514, 4903, and 5328.15 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to public social services
Federal law grants the California protection and advocacy (P&A) agency the right to access state agency reports memorializing relevant certification or licensing reviews, and investigations of alleged abuse, neglect, injury or death of persons with disabilities. However, in 2009 the Department of Public Health (DPH) cited state privacy laws as a basis for restricting the P&A agency’s direct access to unredacted reports for persons with psychiatric disabilites and persons with developmental disabilities. SB 1377 clarifies the California P&A’s right to timely, un-redacted, direct access to abuse and neglect reporting information.
Approved by Governor September 27, 2012. Filed Secretary of State September 27, 2012.
Our Position: Support
While DREDF recognizes the importance of appropriate confidentiality and privacy rights, the DPH’s restriction of unredacted reports was reduntant and counter-productive. It created delays that could have jeopardized the well-being of the individuals the California P&A agency is mandated to protect. SB 1377 ensures that the P&A agency has timely access to abuse and neglect reporting that is critical to the success of its federally mandated mission to protect the rights of persons with disabilities.