Rep. Lakesia Collins

Filed: 3/20/2023





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2    AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend House Bill 439 by replacing
3everything after the enacting clause with the following:
4    "Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5Illinois Youth in Care Timely Provision of Essential Care Act.
6    Section 5. Findings. The General Assembly finds that:
7        (1) From 2013 to 2018 more than 500 in-state
8    residential treatment beds were eliminated for youth in
9    the care of the Department of Children and Family Services
10    with serious and ongoing mental health needs.
11        (2) Development of evidence-based alternatives to
12    residential treatment, such as therapeutic foster care and
13    multi-dimensional treatment foster care, has not met the
14    need caused by the elimination of more than 500
15    residential treatment beds.
16        (3) Quality residential treatment, evidence-based



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1    therapeutic foster care, and specialized foster care are
2    critical components of the system of care for youth in the
3    care of the Department.
4        (4) It is imperative that children identified as
5    requiring residential treatment, therapeutic foster care,
6    or specialized foster care receive that treatment in a
7    timely and competent fashion.
8        (5) One significant barrier to the development of new
9    residential treatment beds has been the ability to attract
10    and retain qualified staff.
11        (6) Community-based providers have a 42%-50% annual
12    staff turnover rate for caseworkers, supervisors,
13    therapists, and residential staff.
14        (7) High rates of staff turnover are directly linked
15    to poor outcomes for children and youth in care, including
16    increased lengths of stay, which especially hurt black
17    children as they are 3 times more likely to languish in
18    care.
19        (8) Due to the lack of in-state residential treatment
20    beds, evidence-based alternatives, and quality specialized
21    foster homes for youth in care:
22            (A) Youth in care are waiting long periods of
23        times in temporary settings where they often receive
24        inadequate treatment to address their highly acute
25        needs. The temporary settings also force youth to
26        experience placement changes that are only necessary



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1        because of the lack of critical beds.
2            (B) Youth in care are left in locked inpatient
3        psychiatric units beyond the time that they clinically
4        need to be hospitalized ("beyond medical necessity")
5        because the outpatient placement resources they need
6        are not available. In State Fiscal Year 2022, youth
7        who were beyond medical necessity remained in
8        psychiatric hospitals for an average of 75 days longer
9        than they needed to be in the hospital because of the
10        lack of placement resources. These stays cause
11        irreparable harm to youth.
12            (C) Youth in care identified as needing inpatient
13        psychiatric care are being denied admission to
14        inpatient psychiatric units due to the risk that the
15        youth will not have a placement to discharge to when
16        they are ready for discharge.
17            (D) Youth in care are being sent to out-of-state
18        residential facilities where it is more difficult to
19        monitor safety and well-being and more costly and
20        challenging to facilitate achievement of their
21        permanency goals.
22    Section 10. Improving access to residential treatment,
23evidence-based alternatives to residential treatment, and
24specialized foster care. The Department of Children and
25Family Services shall develop a written, strategic plan that



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1comprehensively addresses improving timely access to quality
2in-state residential treatment, evidence-based alternatives to
3residential treatment, and specialized foster care for youth
4in the care of the Department who have significant emotional,
5behavioral, and medical needs. The planning process must be
6transparent and allow for stakeholder input.
7    Section 15. Implementation. The strategic plan developed
8by the Department of Children and Family Services shall be
9finalized and made public no later than one year after the
10effective date of this Act. The strategic plan shall be
11revised within 6 months after the rate study required under
12Section 35.11 of the Children and Family Services Act is
13complete and available for review, and the Department shall
14incorporate the rate study's recommendations into the
15strategic plan. The strategic plan shall include:
16        (1) Benchmarks and a timeline for implementing each
17    provision of the plan.
18        (2) Strategy for obtaining resources needed to
19    implement each provision of the plan.
20        (3) Ongoing stakeholder engagement during the
21    implementation of the plan.".