2012 Connecticut General Statutes
Title 17a - Social and Human Services and Resources
Chapter 319 - Department of Children and Families
Section 17a-62a - Homeless youth program.
(a) As used in this section:
(1) “Homeless youth” means a person under twenty-one years of age who is without shelter where appropriate care and supervision are available and who lacks a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence, including a youth under the age of eighteen whose parent or legal guardian is unable or unwilling to provide shelter and appropriate care;
(2) “Fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence” means a dwelling at which a person resides on a regular basis that adequately provides safe shelter, but does not include (A) a publicly or privately operated institutional shelter designed to provide temporary living accommodations; (B) transitional housing; (C) a temporary placement with a peer, friend or family member who has not offered a permanent residence, residential lease or temporary lodging for more than thirty days; or (D) a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping place by human beings; and
(3) “Aftercare services” means continued counseling, guidance or support for not more than six months following the provision of services.
(b) The Department of Children and Families, within available appropriations, shall establish a program that provides one or more of the following services for homeless youth: Public outreach, respite housing, and transitional living services for homeless youth and youth at risk of homelessness. The department may enter into a contract with nonprofit organizations or municipalities to implement this section. Such program may have the following components:
(1) A public outreach and drop-in component that provides youth drop-in centers with walk-in access to crisis intervention and ongoing supportive services, including one-to-one case management services on a self-referral basis and public outreach that locates, contacts and provides information, referrals and services to homeless youth and youth at risk of homelessness. Such component may include, but need not be limited to, information, referrals and services for (A) family reunification services, conflict resolution or mediation counseling; (B) respite housing, case management aimed at obtaining food, clothing, medical care or mental health counseling, counseling regarding violence, prostitution, substance abuse, sexually transmitted diseases, HIV and pregnancy, and referrals to agencies that provide support services to homeless youth and youth at risk of homelessness; (C) education, employment and independent living skills; (D) aftercare services; and (E) specialized services for highly vulnerable homeless youth, including teen parents, sexually exploited youth and youth with mental illness or developmental disabilities;
(2) A respite housing component that provides homeless youth with referrals and walk-in access to respite care on an emergency basis that includes voluntary housing, with private shower facilities, beds and at least one meal each day, and assistance with reunification with family or a legal guardian when required or appropriate. Services provided at respite housing may include, but need not be limited to, (A) family reunification services or referral to safe housing; (B) individual, family and group counseling; (C) assistance in obtaining clothing; (D) access to medical and dental care and mental health counseling; (E) education and employment services; (F) recreational activities; (G) case management, advocacy and referral services; (H) independent living skills training; and (I) aftercare services and transportation; and
(3) A transitional living component that (A) assists homeless youth in finding and maintaining safe housing, and (B) includes rental assistance and related supportive services. Such component may include, but need not be limited to, (i) educational assessment and referral to educational programs; (ii) career planning, employment, job skills training and independent living skills training; (iii) job placement; (iv) budgeting and money management; (v) assistance in securing housing appropriate to needs and income; (vi) counseling regarding violence, prostitution, substance abuse, sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy, referral for medical services or chemical dependency treatment; and (vii) parenting skills, self-sufficiency support services or life skills training and aftercare services.
(c) On or before February 1, 2012, and annually thereafter, the Commissioner of Children and Families shall submit a report regarding the program established under subsection (b) of this section, in accordance with section 11-4a, to the select committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to children. The report shall include recommendations for any changes to the program to ensure that the best available services are being delivered to homeless youth and youth at risk of homelessness. The report shall include key outcome indicators and measures and shall set benchmarks for evaluating progress in accomplishing the purposes of subsection (b) of this section.
(P.A. 10-179, S. 28, 30; P.A. 11-25, S. 3.)
History: (Revisor’s note: In codifying P.A. 10-179, S. 30, a reference to “section 1 of this act” was deemed by the Revisors to be a reference to “section 28 of this act” and therefore cited as “subsection (b) of this section” in Subsec. (c)); P.A. 11-25 made technical changes in Subsec. (a)(1) and (2) and Subsec. (b).
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