A. Definitions. The following words have the meanings indicated.
(1) "Children's Cabinet" means the Children's Cabinet established by Executive Order 01.01.2005.34.
(2) "Director" means the Director of the Office of the Independent Juvenile Services Monitor.
(3) "Disciplinary action" means any punitive action against a child that results in more security, additional obligations, or less personal freedom.
(4) "Department" means the Department of Juvenile Services.
(5) "Executive Director" means the Executive Director of the Governor's Office for Children.
(6) "Facility" means:
(a) A residential facility operated by the Department; and
(b) A residential facility owned by the Department but privately operated.
(7) "Grievance" means a complaint made by a child or on behalf of a child due to a circumstance or action considered to be unjust. "Grievance" does not include an employee grievance, disciplinary appeal, or complaint.
(8) "Independent Juvenile Services Monitor" means the Director of the Office of the Independent Juvenile Services Monitor and any individual designated by the Director to determine whether the needs of children under the jurisdiction of the Department are being met in compliance with State law, that their rights are being upheld, and that they are not being abused.
(9) "Office" means the Office of the Independent Juvenile Services Monitor.
(10) "Secretary" means the Secretary of Juvenile Services.
B. Established. There is an Office of the Independent Juvenile Services Monitor as an independent unit in the Governor's Office for Children.
(1) The Office shall include a full-time Director and staff as provided in the State budget.
(2) All salaries for the Director and independent juvenile justice monitors and expenses for rent, equipment, supplies, and general operating expenses necessary for the work of the Office shall be as provided in the State budget.
(3) In cooperation with the Secretary of Budget and Management, the Director shall set minimum salaries, qualifications, and standards of training and experience for positions with the Office.
D. Duties and Responsibilities.
(1) The Office shall:
(a) Evaluate at each facility:
(i) The child advocacy grievance process;
(ii) The Department's monitoring process;
(iii) The treatment of and services to youth;
(iv) The physical conditions of the facility; and
(v) The adequacy of staffing.
(b) Review all reports of disciplinary actions, grievances, and grievance dispositions received from each facility and alterations in the status or placement of a child that result in more security, additional obligations, or less personal freedom;
(c) Receive copies of the grievances submitted to the Department;
(d) Perform unannounced site visits and on-site inspections of facilities;
(e) Receive and review all incident reports submitted to the Department from facilities;
(f) Receive reports of the findings of child protective services investigations of allegations of abuse or neglect of a child in a facility; and
(g) Be available to attend meetings of the advisory boards established under Article 83C, §2-119 of the Code.
(2) The Office may:
(a) Review relevant laws, policies, procedures, and juvenile justice records, including records relating to individual youth;
(b) On request, conduct interviews with staff, youth, and others;
(c) Review investigative reports produced by the Department relating to youth in facilities; and
(d) Participate, within the context of the local department of social services' multidisciplinary team process, in a child protective services investigation conducted under Title 5, Subtitle 7 of the Family Law Article concerning any allegation of abuse or neglect within any assigned facility.
(1) The Office shall report in a timely manner to the Children's Cabinet, the Executive Director, the Secretary, and in accordance with
(a) Knowledge of any problem regarding the care, supervision, and treatment of children in facilities;
(b) Findings, actions, and recommendations, related to the investigations of disciplinary actions, grievances, incident reports, and alleged cases of child abuse and neglect; and
(c) All other findings and actions related to the monitoring required under this Executive Order.
(2) The Office shall report quarterly to the Executive Director, the Children's Cabinet, and the Secretary.
(3) A copy of the report shall be provided to the State Advisory Board for Juvenile Services and, in accordance with §2-1246 of the State Government Article, the General Assembly.
(4) The report shall include:
(a) All activities of the Office;
(b) Actions taken by the Department resulting from the findings and recommendations of the Independent Juvenile Services Monitor, including the Department's response; and
(c) A summary of any violations of the standards and regulations of the Department that remain unabated for 30 days or more during the reporting period.
(5) On or before November 30 of each year, the Office shall report to the Executive Director.