Requires adult homes and assisted living residences to perform criminal background checks of their employees and prospective employees; enables certain adult homes and assisted living residences to collect certain fees for background checks of their employees and prospective employees.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public health law, in relation to requiring adult homes and assisted living residences to perform criminal background checks of their employees and prospective employees and to enable certain adult homes and assisted living residences to collect certain fees in connection with such background checks of employees and prospective employees
PURPOSE: To protect the residents of facilities who care for those most vulnerable, from sex offenders and violent criminals by ensuring that these facilities perform criminal background checks of their employees.
Section 1 amends Subdivision 6 of section 2899 of the Public Health Law, as amended by chapter 331 of the Laws of 2006 to include assisted living residences licensed in article 46(b) of this chapter, assisted living programs pursuant to Section 461(1) of the Social Services Law, continuing care retirement communities pursuant to article 46 of this chapter and any residential services for persons that are provided a license under article sixteen, nineteen, thirty-one, thirty-two of the Mental Hygiene Law or other residential services primarily under the jurisdiction of the office for mental health to the definition of "Provider."
Section 2 amends Subdivision 11 of section 2899 of the Public Health Law, as amended by chapter 331 of the laws of 2006 to provide that non-Medicaid-enrolled providers may seek reimbursement of the actual cost incurred by the provider of a background check from an employee or prospective employee.
JUSTIFICATION:, Currently, certified nursing homes, home health care agencies and long-term home health care agencies are required to perform criminal background checks on prospective employees. The Department of Health reimburses these facilities for the cost of the background check. There is no such provision for licensed assisted living residences, continuing care retirement communities, residential services for the mentally or developmentally disabled, or residential services for persons recovering from alcoholism or substance abuse. The residents of these facilities are among the most vulnerable in our population and depend on these residential facilities for their very existence. This was brought to light in January of 2013 when a 91 year old woman at the Loudonhill Home for Adults was allegedly sexually abused by a maintenance man employed at the adult home facility since 2008. This employee was previously convicted in 1984 of first-degree rape, sodomy and attempted sexual abuse and served 16 years in prison for victimizing a woman in Saratoga County. Had this facility performed a criminal background check, this man would never have been hired and a 91 year old would not have been victimized. Furthermore, it is not enough to only check New York's Sex Offender Registry or the National Sex Offender Registry, as those registries report only level two and level three sex offenders. It does not account for level one sex offenders or people that have been convicted of other violent crimes. A full criminal background check is the most
comprehensive employment screen necessary to protect those most vulnerable and placed in the care of others. While the Department of Health reimburses the facilities currently required to perform a criminal background check on its employees, the Department of Health will only reimburse the facilities added by this bill, if they are a Medicaid- enrolled provider. Those residential facilities which are not Medicaid -enrolled, may request reimbursement from the employee or prospective employee.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New bill.
FISCAL IMPACT: To be determined.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall have become a law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 3782 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE February 15, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. MARCHIONE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Health AN ACT to amend the public health law, in relation to requiring adult homes and assisted living residences to perform criminal background checks of their employees and prospective employees and to enable certain adult homes and assisted living residences to collect certain fees in connection with such background checks of employees and prospective employees THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision 6 of section 2899 of the public health law, as amended by chapter 331 of the laws of 2006, is amended to read as follows: 6. "Provider" shall mean any residential health care facility licensed under article twenty-eight of this chapter;
[or]any certified home health agency, licensed home care services agency or long term home health care program certified under article thirty-six of this chapter; ANY ASSISTED LIVING RESIDENCE LICENSED UNDER ARTICLE FORTY-SIX-B OF THIS CHAPTER; ANY ASSISTED LIVING PROGRAMS APPROVED BY THE DEPARTMENT PURSU- ANT TO SECTION FOUR HUNDRED SIXTY-ONE-1 OF THE SOCIAL SERVICES LAW; ANY CONTINUING CARE RETIREMENT COMMUNITIES WHICH POSSESS A CERTIFICATE OF AUTHORITY PURSUANT TO ARTICLE FORTY-SIX OF THIS CHAPTER; OR ANY RESIDEN- TIAL SERVICES FOR PERSONS THAT ARE PROVIDED UNDER A LICENSE PURSUANT TO ARTICLE SIXTEEN, NINETEEN, THIRTY-ONE OR THIRTY-TWO OF THE MENTAL HYGIENE LAW OR OTHER RESIDENTIAL SERVICES PRIMARILY FUNDED BY OR PRIMA- RILY UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF THE OFFICE FOR MENTAL HEALTH. S 2. Subdivision 11 of section 2899-a of the public health law, as amended by chapter 331 of the laws of 2006, is amended to read as follows: 11. No provider shall seek, directly or indirectly, to obtain from a prospective employee, temporary employee or employee compensation in anyEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD08378-01-3 S. 3782 2
form for the payment of the fee or any facility costs associated with obtaining the criminal history information check required by this arti- cle; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT A PROVIDER THAT IS NOT A MEDICAID-ENROLLED PROVIDER MAY SEEK REIMBURSEMENT OF THE ACTUAL COST INCURRED BY THE PROVIDER OF A BACKGROUND CHECK FROM AN EMPLOYEE OR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYEE. S 3. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall have become a law.