(a) Any treatment program to which a child abuser convicted of a violation of Section 273a or 273d is referred as a condition of probation shall meet the following criteria:
(1) Substantial expertise and experience in the treatment of victims of child abuse and the families in which abuse and violence have occurred.
(2) Staff providing direct service are therapists licensed to practice in this state or are under the direct supervision of a therapist licensed to practice in this state.
(3) Utilization of a treatment regimen designed to specifically address the offense, including methods of preventing and breaking the cycle of family violence, anger management, and parenting education that focuses, among other things, on means of identifying the developmental and emotional needs of the child.
(4) Utilization of group and individual therapy and counseling, with groups no larger than 12 persons.
(5) Capability of identifying substance abuse and either treating the abuse or referring the offender to a substance abuse program, to the extent that the court has not already done so.
(6) Entry into a written agreement with the defendant that includes an outline of the components of the program, the attendance requirements, a requirement to attend group session free of chemical influence, and a statement that the defendant may be removed from the program if it is determined that the defendant is not benefiting from the program or is disruptive to the program.
(7) The program may include, on the recommendation of the treatment counselor, family counseling. However, no child victim shall be compelled or required to participate in the program, including family counseling, and no program may condition a defendant’s enrollment on participation by the child victim. The treatment counselor shall privately advise the child victim that his or her participation is voluntary.
(b) If the program finds that the defendant is unsuitable, the program shall immediately contact the probation department or the court. The probation department or court shall either recalendar the case for hearing or refer the defendant to an appropriate alternative child abuser’s treatment counseling program.
(c) Upon request by the child abuser’s treatment counseling program, the court shall provide the defendant’s arrest report, prior incidents of violence, and treatment history to the program.
(d) The child abuser’s treatment counseling program shall provide the probation department and the court with periodic progress reports at least every three months that include attendance, fee payment history, and program compliance. The program shall submit a final evaluation that includes the program’s evaluation of the defendant’s progress, and recommendation for either successful or unsuccessful termination of the program.
(e) The defendant shall pay for the full costs of the treatment program, including any drug testing. However, the court may waive any portion or all of that financial responsibility upon a finding of an inability to pay. Upon the request of the defendant, the court shall hold a hearing to determine the defendant’s ability to pay for the treatment program. At the hearing the court may consider all relevant information, but shall consider the impact of the costs of the treatment program on the defendant’s ability to provide food, clothing, and shelter for the child injured by a violation of Section 273a or 273d. If the court finds that the defendant is unable to pay for any portion of the costs of the treatment program, its reasons for that finding shall be stated on the record. In the event of this finding, the program fees or a portion thereof shall be waived.
(f) All programs accepting referrals of child abusers pursuant to this section shall accept offenders for whom fees have been partially or fully waived. However, the court shall require each qualifying program to serve no more than its proportionate share of those offenders who have been granted fee waivers, and require all qualifying programs to share equally in the cost of serving those offenders with fee waivers.
(Amended by Stats. 1997, Ch. 17, Sec. 95. Effective January 1, 1998.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018