Bill Text: TX HB1637 | 2019-2020 | 86th Legislature | Comm Sub


Bill Title: Relating to required training regarding trauma-informed care for certain judges and attorneys.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Republican 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-05-06 - Committee report sent to Calendars [HB1637 Detail]

Download: Texas-2019-HB1637-Comm_Sub.html
  86R25246 MM-F
 
  By: Miller H.B. No. 1637
 
  Substitute the following for H.B. No. 1637:
 
  By:  White C.S.H.B. No. 1637
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to required training regarding trauma-informed care for
  certain judges and attorneys.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Subchapter A, Chapter 264, Family Code, is
  amended by adding Section 264.016 to read as follows:
         Sec. 264.016.  TRAINING RELATED TO TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE.
  (a) The department shall ensure that each attorney who the
  department employs or contracts with to represent the state in a
  suit filed by a governmental entity under this subtitle seeking
  termination of the parent-child relationship or the appointment of
  a conservator for the child completes a training program regarding
  trauma-informed care and the effect of trauma on children in the
  conservatorship of the department.
         (b)  An attorney shall complete the training required by this
  section before the attorney may represent the state in a suit
  described by Subsection (a).
         (c)  The training required by this section must include
  information regarding:
               (1)  the symptoms of trauma and the impact that trauma
  has on a child, including how trauma may affect a child's
  development, emotions, memories, behavior, and decision-making;
               (2)  attachment and how a lack of attachment may affect
  a child;
               (3)  the role that trauma-informed care and services
  can have in a child's ability to build connections, feel safe, and
  regulate the child's emotions to help the child build resiliency
  and overcome the effects of trauma and adverse childhood
  experiences;
               (4)  the importance of screening children for trauma
  and the risk of mislabeling and inappropriate treatment of children
  without proper screening, including the risk associated with
  increasing the use of psychotropic medication;
               (5)  the potential for re-traumatization of children in
  the conservatorship of the department; and
               (6)  the availability of:
                     (A)  research-supported, trauma-informed,
  non-pharmacological interventions; and
                     (B)  trauma-informed advocacy to increase a
  child's access, while the child is in the conservatorship of the
  department, to:
                           (i)  trauma-informed care; and
                           (ii)  trauma-informed mental and behavioral
  health services.
         SECTION 2.  Section 22.011, Government Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 22.011.  JUDICIAL INSTRUCTION RELATED TO FAMILY
  VIOLENCE, SEXUAL ASSAULT, TRAFFICKING OF PERSONS, CHILDHOOD
  TRAUMA, AND CHILD ABUSE. (a) The supreme court shall provide
  judicial training related to the problems of family violence,
  sexual assault, trafficking of persons, childhood trauma, and child
  abuse and to issues concerning sex offender characteristics.
         (d)  The instruction must include information about:
               (1)  statutory and case law relating to videotaping a
  child's testimony and relating to competency of children to
  testify;
               (2)  methods for eliminating the trauma to the child
  caused by the court process;
               (3)  case law, statutory law, and procedural rules
  relating to family violence, sexual assault, trafficking of
  persons, and child abuse;
               (4)  methods for providing protection for victims of
  family violence, sexual assault, trafficking of persons, or child
  abuse;
               (5)  available community and state resources for
  counseling and other aid to victims and to offenders;
               (6)  gender bias in the judicial process;
               (7)  dynamics and effects of being a victim of family
  violence, sexual assault, trafficking of persons, or child abuse;
  [and]
               (8)  issues concerning sex offender characteristics;
  and
               (9)  issues related to childhood trauma and adverse
  childhood experiences.
         SECTION 3.  The heading to Section 22.110, Government Code,
  is amended to read as follows:
         Sec. 22.110.  JUDICIAL TRAINING [INSTRUCTION] RELATED TO
  FAMILY VIOLENCE, SEXUAL ASSAULT, TRAFFICKING OF PERSONS, CHILDHOOD
  TRAUMA, AND CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT.
         SECTION 4.  Section 22.110, Government Code, is amended by
  amending Subsections (a), (b), and (d) and adding Subsection (d-2)
  to read as follows:
         (a)  The court of criminal appeals shall assure that judicial
  training related to the problems of family violence, sexual
  assault, trafficking of persons, childhood trauma, and child abuse
  and neglect is provided.
         (b)  The court of criminal appeals shall adopt the rules
  necessary to accomplish the purposes of this section. The rules
  must:
               (1)  require each district judge, judge of a statutory
  county court, associate judge appointed under Chapter 54A of this
  code or Chapter 201, Family Code, master, referee, and magistrate
  to complete at least 12 hours of the training within the judge's
  first term of office or the judicial officer's first four years of
  service that includes:
                     (A)  at [and provide a method for certification of
  completion of that training. At] least four hours of [the] training
  that:
                           (i)  is [must be] dedicated to issues
  related to trafficking of persons and child abuse and neglect; and
                           (ii)  covers [must cover] at least two of the
  topics described in Subsections (d)(8)-(13);
                     (B)  at [(d)(8)-(12). At] least six hours of
  [the] training [must be] dedicated to the training described by
  Subsections (d)(5), (6), and (7); and
                     (C)  for a judge of a court with jurisdiction over
  cases involving children in the conservatorship of the Department
  of Family and Protective Services or children in the juvenile
  justice system, at least three hours of training dedicated to the
  training described by Subsection (d)(13);
               (2)  provide a method for certifying the completion of
  the training described by Subdivision (1);
               (3)  [. The rules must] require each judge and judicial
  officer to complete an additional five hours of training during
  each additional term in office or four years of service, including:
                     (A)  at[. At] least two hours of [the additional]
  training [must be] dedicated to issues related to trafficking of
  persons and child abuse and neglect; and
                     (B)  for a judge of a court with jurisdiction over
  cases involving children in the conservatorship of the Department
  of Family and Protective Services or children in the juvenile
  justice system, at least one hour of training dedicated to the
  training described by Subsection (d)(13); and
               (4)  [. The rules must] exempt from the training
  requirement of this subsection each judge or judicial officer who
  files an affidavit stating that the judge or judicial officer does
  not hear any cases involving family violence, sexual assault,
  trafficking of persons, childhood trauma, or child abuse and
  neglect.
         (d)  The instruction must include information about:
               (1)  statutory and case law relating to videotaping a
  child's testimony and relating to competency of children to
  testify;
               (2)  methods for eliminating the trauma to the child
  caused by the court process;
               (3)  case law, statutory law, and procedural rules
  relating to family violence, sexual assault, trafficking of
  persons, and child abuse and neglect;
               (4)  methods for providing protection for victims of
  family violence, sexual assault, trafficking of persons, and child
  abuse and neglect;
               (5)  available community and state resources for
  counseling and other aid to victims and to offenders;
               (6)  gender bias in the judicial process;
               (7)  dynamics and effects of being a victim of family
  violence, sexual assault, trafficking of persons, or child abuse
  and neglect;
               (8)  dynamics of sexual abuse of children, including
  child abuse accommodation syndrome and grooming;
               (9)  impact of substance abuse on an unborn child and on
  a person's ability to care for a child;
               (10)  issues of attachment and bonding between children
  and caregivers;
               (11)  issues of child development that pertain to
  trafficking of persons and child abuse and neglect; [and]
               (12)  medical findings regarding physical abuse,
  sexual abuse, trafficking of persons, and child abuse and neglect;
  and
               (13)  childhood trauma and adverse childhood
  experiences described by Subsection (d-2).
         (d-2)  The training on childhood trauma and adverse
  childhood experiences under Subsection (d)(13) must include
  information regarding:
               (1)  the symptoms of trauma and the impact that trauma
  has on a child, including how trauma may affect a child's
  development, emotions, memories, behavior, and decision-making;
               (2)  attachment and how a lack of attachment may affect
  a child;
               (3)  the role that trauma-informed care and services
  can have in a child's ability to build connections, feel safe, and
  regulate the child's emotions to help the child build resiliency
  and overcome the effects of trauma and adverse childhood
  experiences;
               (4)  the importance of screening children for trauma
  and the risk of mislabeling and inappropriate treatment of children
  without proper screening, including the risk associated with
  increasing the use of psychotropic medication;
               (5)  the potential for re-traumatization of children in
  the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective
  Services; and
               (6)  the availability of:
                     (A)  research-supported, trauma-informed,
  non-pharmacological interventions; and
                     (B)  trauma-informed advocacy to increase a
  child's access, while the child is in the conservatorship of the
  Department of Family and Protective Services, to:
                           (i)  trauma-informed care; and
                           (ii)  trauma-informed mental and behavioral
  health services.
         SECTION 5.  (a) A judge or judicial officer who is in office
  on the effective date of this Act must complete the training
  required by Section 22.110(b)(1)(C), Government Code, as added by
  this Act, not later than December 1, 2021.
         (b)  An attorney employed by or under contract with the
  Department of Family and Protective Services on the effective date
  of this Act to represent the state in a suit filed by a governmental
  entity under Subtitle E, Title 5, Family Code, seeking termination
  of the parent-child relationship or the appointment of a
  conservator for the child, must complete the training required by
  Section 264.016, Family Code, as added by this Act, not later than
  September 1, 2020.
         SECTION 6.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2019.
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