SUBSTITUTE SENATE BILL 5830
State of Washington 52nd Legislature 1991 Regular Session
By Senate Committee on Children & Family Services (originally sponsored by Senators Stratton, Erwin, Rasmussen, Williams, Talmadge, Wojahn, Vognild, Pelz, Snyder and Owen).
Read first time March 6, 1991.
AN ACT Relating to youth gang violence reduction; adding a new chapter to Title 43 RCW; creating a new section; and making appropriations.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. The legislature finds and declares that:
(1) The number of youth who are members and associates of gangs and commit gang violence has significantly increased throughout the entire greater Puget Sound, Spokane, and other areas of the state;
(2) Youth gang violence has caused a tremendous strain on the progress of the communities impacted. The loss of life, property, and positive opportunity for growth caused by youth gang violence has reached intolerable levels. Increased youth gang activity has seriously strained the budgets of many local jurisdictions, as well as threatened the ability of the educational system to educate our youth;
(3) Among youth gang members the high school drop-out rate is significantly higher than among nongang members. Since the economic future of our state depends on a highly educated and skilled work force, this high school drop-out rate threatens the economic welfare of our future work force, as well as the future economic growth of our state;
(4) The unemployment rate among youth gang members is higher than that among the general youth population. The unusual unemployment rate, lack of education and skills, and the increased criminal activity could significantly impact our future prison population;
(5) Most youth gangs are subcultural. This implies that gangs provide the nurturing, discipline, and guidance to gang youth and potential gang youth that is generally provided by communities and other social systems. The subcultural designation means that youth gang participation and violence can be effectively reduced in Washington communities and schools through the involvement of community, educational, criminal justice, and employment systems working in a unified manner with parents and individuals who have a firsthand knowledge of youth gangs and at-risk youth; and
(6) A strong unified effort among parents and community, educational, criminal justice, and employment systems would facilitate: (a) The learning process; (b) the control and reduction of gang violence; (c) the prevention of youth joining negative gangs; and (d) the intervention into youth gangs.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 2. It is the intent of the legislature to cause the development of positive prevention and intervention pilot programs for elementary and secondary age youth through cooperation between individual schools, local organizations, and government. It is also the intent of the legislature that if the prevention and intervention pilot programs are determined to be effective in reducing problems associated with youth gang violence, that other counties in the state be eligible to receive special state funding to establish similar positive prevention and intervention programs.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 3. Unless the context otherwise requires, the following definitions shall apply throughout sections 1 through 12 of this act:
(1) "School" means any public school within a school district any portion of which is in a county with a population of over three hundred fifty thousand.
(2) "Community organization" means any organization recognized by a city or county as such, as well as private, nonprofit organizations registered with the secretary of state.
(3) "Gang risk prevention and intervention pilot program" means a community-based positive prevention and intervention program for gang members, potential gang members, at-risk youth, and elementary through high school-aged youth directed at all of the following:
(a) Reducing the probability of youth involvement in gang activities and consequent violence.
(b) Establishing ties, at an early age, between youth and community organizations.
(c) Committing local business and community resources to positive programming for youth.
(d) Committing state resources to assist in creating the gang risk prevention and intervention pilot programs.
(4) "Cultural awareness retreat" means a program that temporarily relocates at-risk youth or gang members from their usual social environment to a different social environment, with the specific purpose of having them performing activities which will enhance or increase their positive behavior and potential life successes.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 4. (1) The department of community development may contract with school districts for the development, administration, and implementation in the county of community-based gang risk prevention and intervention pilot programs.
(2) Proposals by the school district for gang risk prevention and intervention pilot program grant funding shall begin with school years no sooner than the 1992-93 session, and last for a duration of two years.
(3) The school district proposal shall include:
(a) A description of the program goals, activities, and curriculum. The description of the program goals shall include a list of measurable objectives for the purpose of evaluation by the school district. To the extent possible, proposals shall contain empirical data on current problems, such as drop-out rates and occurrences of violence on and off campus by school-age individuals.
(b) A description of the individual school or schools and the geographic area to be affected by the program.
(c) A demonstration of broad-based support for the program from business and community organizations.
(d) A clear description of the experience, expertise, and other qualifications of the community organizations to conduct an effective prevention and intervention program in cooperation with a school or a group of schools.
(e) A proposed budget for expenditure of the grant.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 5. (1) A school district in a county with a population of over three hundred fifty thousand may request proposals for establishing gang risk prevention and intervention pilot programs from either public entities that apply jointly with individual schools or community organizations. The proposals shall be reviewed and recommendations for awarding grants shall be made by a committee made up of: (a) A representative from the school district taking the proposal, appointed by the school district's board of directors; (b) a representative appointed by the director of the department of community development or designate; and (c) a representative from the local juvenile court administration.
(2) A school district, upon its election to enter into a contract pursuant to section 4 of this act, shall, no later than March 1, 1992, distribute a standard request for proposals.
(3) Proposals made to the school district must comply with the conditions of the grant.
(4) The school district shall additionally monitor and evaluate the gang risk prevention and intervention pilot programs pursuant to the following criteria:
(a) Success in obtaining stated goals.
(b) Reduction in drop-out rates.
(c) Reduction in violence among students, on and off campus.
(d) Development of techniques for early identification of at-risk youth.
(5) The school district shall report to the department of community development the results of the program.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 6. Gang risk prevention and intervention pilot programs shall include, but are not limited to:
(1) Counseling for targeted at-risk students, parents, and families, individually and collectively.
(2) Exposure to positive sports and cultural activities, promoting affiliations between youth and the local community.
(3) Job training, which may include apprentice programs in coordination with local businesses, job skills development at the school, or information about vocational opportunities in the community.
(4) Positive interaction with local law enforcement personnel.
(5) The use of local organizations to provide job search training skills.
(6) Cultural awareness retreats.
(7) The use of specified state resources, as requested.
(8) Full service schools under section 9 of this act.
(9) Community service such as volunteerism and citizenship.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 7. (1) Upon request from the local community organization receiving an award under section 5 of this act or the granting local school district, or both, the employment security department shall provide a job counselor or counselors to assist at cultural awareness retreats. The counselor shall provide assistance with the following:
(a) Testing for job occupation preferences.
(b) Information on the skills needed for different occupations.
(c) Coordinating the personal appearance of small business owners or corporate managers to explain the type of skills and characteristics businesses currently need in prospective employees, as well as those of prospective future employees.
(d) Establishing a business mentor program between the small business owners or corporate managers and the youth who are willing to participate.
(e) Establishing a specific program that provides help with employment opportunities for youth who attend cultural awareness retreats.
The department may provide other services than those specified.
(2) Upon request from the local community organization awarded the grant, the local school district, or both, the department may provide those services specified in subsection (1) of this section for the youth who are receiving services from the local community organization.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 8. Upon request from the local community organization receiving an award under section 5 of this act or the granting local school district, or both, the department of labor and industries shall:
(1) Provide information and assistance with regards to the skills and educational backgrounds needed to apply for apprenticeship programs.
(2) Provide direction and assistance with applications for apprenticeship programs.
(3) Explore and examine the feasibility of establishing preapprenticeship programs for those youth who cannot qualify for apprenticeships because of age or educational deficiencies, and are participating or have participated in the retreat.
(4) Provide assistance for and coordination of the personal appearance of representatives of the joint apprenticeship committee with the specific purpose of discussing the skills needed to perform different occupations.
(5) Provide assistance for and coordination of the establishment of a joint apprenticeship mentor program with those youth who are participating or have participated in the retreat program.
The department may provide other services.
Upon request from the local community organization receiving the award under section 5 of this act or the local school district, or both, the department shall provide the services in this section either at the grant-receiving school or at the cultural awareness retreat, or both.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 9. (1) The purpose of a full service school shall be to increase the interaction between youth and the community at large. A full service school shall provide a wide range of opportunities for all citizens, including goals under RCW 28A.620.010 (1), (2), (3), and (6), and subsection (2) of this section.
(2) The local school district and the local community organization that received a grant under section 5 of this act shall work with other community organizations, the superintendent of public instruction, and school personnel in the selected school to determine the services needed by the community that shall be offered at the full service school.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 10. (1) Upon request, the division of juvenile rehabilitation shall through cooperation with private business or through interagency agreement with the state parks and recreation commission or department of natural resources, or both, provide facilities for cultural awareness retreats. The requests for facilities must be made by one of the following: (a) The community organization receiving the grant, or (b) the local school district that assisted in awarding the grant. The division may provide other services as requested.
(2) The services may be, but are not limited to, persons knowledgeable of juvenile gang behavior.
(3) Upon receiving a request for cultural awareness retreat facilities, the division shall notify the departments of employment security and labor and industries of the organization requesting the retreat, and the time, place, and date of the retreat.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 11. Cultural awareness retreats shall include but are not limited to the following programs:
(1) To develop positive attitudes and self-esteem.
(2) To develop youth decision-making ability.
(3) To assist with career development and educational development.
(4) To help develop respect for the community, and ethnic origin.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 12. The following sums, or as much thereof as may be necessary, are appropriated for the biennium ending June 30, 1993, from the general fund:
(1) Five hundred thousand dollars, to the department of community development for the purposes of the grants awarded under section 5 of this act.
(2) One hundred thousand dollars, to the division of juvenile rehabilitation, for the purpose of providing facilities under section 10 of this act.
(3) One hundred thousand dollars, to the employment security department, for the purposes of section 7 of this act.
(4) One hundred thousand dollars, to the department of labor and industries, for the purposes of section 8 of this act.
(5) One hundred thousand dollars, to the department of community development, to be awarded by the department of community development to school districts for assisting with the implementation of full service schools under section 9 of this act.
(6) One hundred thousand dollars, to the department of community development, for the purposes of providing job search training skills under section 6(5) of this act.