(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a juvenile justice commission may inquire into the operation of any group home that serves wards or dependent children of the juvenile court and is located in the county or region the commission serves. The commission may review the safety and well-being of wards or dependent children placed in the group home and the program and services provided in relation to the home's published program statement.
(b) In conducting its review, the commission shall respect the confidentiality of minors' records and other information protected under other provisions of law. It may review court or case records of a child provided it keeps the identities of minors named in those records confidential, and may review the financial records of a group home. However, the commission may not review the personnel records of employees or the records of donors to the group home.
(c) The commission shall give the group home manager at least 24 hours' advance notice of a visit to a group home. If the commission believes that there is a serious violation of applicable licensing laws or regulations or that residents of a group home are in danger of physical or mental abuse, abandonment or other substantial threat to their health and safety, the commission shall notify the Community Care Licensing Division of the State Department of Social Services for appropriate action, shall consult with the presiding judge of the juvenile court and chief probation officer as to whether or not a visit is appropriate, and shall notify other juvenile justice commissions of its actions, as appropriate.
(d) Upon the completion of a visit, if the commission finds any condition in the group home that poses a danger to its residents or otherwise violates any applicable law, ordinance, or regulation, the commission shall verbally advise the group home manager of its findings, unless it determines that the advisement could be detrimental to the children placed there, and shall send written confirmation of its findings to the group home manager within 14 days. The commission may also report its findings to the presiding judge of the juvenile court, chief probation officer, State Department of Social Services, or other juvenile justice commissions as appropriate. A group home manager may meet with the juvenile justice commission, chief probation officer, county welfare director, juvenile court, or the State Department of Social Services to resolve any problem or to submit a plan of correction.
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