Working to transform the child welfare system.

HB 1674: Relating to allowing youthful offenders who complete their confinement terms prior to age 21 equal access to a full continuum of rehabilitative and reentry services

HB 1674 pertains to the placement of a child under the age of 18 who is convicted as an adult of a felony crime, and committed for a term of confinement in a correctional institution where adults are confined, to be initially placed in a facility operated by DOC to determine the child’s earned release date. If this date is prior to the child’s 21st birthday, DOC must transfer the child to the custody of DSHS. While in the custody of DSHS, the child must have the same treatment, housing options, and access to program resources as any other child committed directly to a juvenile correctional facility. The child should only be transferred back to the custody of DOC with the approval of DSHS, or when the child turns 21 years old.

If the child’s sentence includes a term of community custody, DSHS cannot release the child until DOC has approved the child’s release plan. If the child is held past his or her earned release date pending release plan approval, DSHS retains custody until a plan is approved, or the child completes the ordered term of confinement prior to the age of 21.

Furthermore, if DSHS determines that retaining custody of the child is a safety risk, the child may be returned to the custody of DOC If the child’s earned release date is on or after his or her 21st birthday, DOC can transfer the child to a facility or institution operated by DSHS, but DOC retains authority of custody and must approve any leave from the facility.

This is the companion bill to SB 5663.