Current Status Introducing Body:
SenateBill Number: 27Primary Sponsor: BryanCommittee Number: 13Type of Legislation: GBSubject: Family support servicesResiding Body: SenateCurrent Committee: Medical AffairsCompanion Bill Number: 3014Computer Document Number: NO5/8741BD.93Introduced Date: 19930112Last History Body: SenateLast History Date: 19930112Last History Type: Introduced, read first time, referred to CommitteeScope of Legislation: StatewideAll Sponsors: Bryan PeelerType of Legislation: General Bill
Bill Body Date Action Description CMN Leg Involved ____ ______ ____________ ______________________________ ___ ____________ 27 Senate 19930112 Introduced, read first time, 13 referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING CHAPTER 21 TO TITLE 44 SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR FAMILY SUPPORT SERVICES THROUGH THE DEPARTMENT OF MENTAL RETARDATION.
Whereas, the General Assembly recognizes that the training and treatment of persons with mental retardation and related disabilities has progressed from institutional to community and family settings; and
Whereas, the role of the community and family in providing support and determining services for persons with mental retardation and related disabilities has become a partnership with professionals and the State; and
Whereas, the General Assembly recognizes that families are the greatest resource available to individuals with developmental disabilities; and
Whereas, the General Assembly recognizes that family support services help keep families together and allow individuals to benefit daily from their families' love and care; and
Whereas, the support of families in their effort to care for their family members at home is more efficient, cost effective, and humane than placing individuals in institutions or in other out-of-home residential settings. Now, therefore,
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina: SECTION 1. Title 44 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 44-21-10. (A) It is the intent of the General Assembly that individuals with mental retardation or related disabilities and their families be afforded supports that emphasize community living and enable them to enjoy typical lifestyles. One way to do this is to recognize that families are the greatest resource available to individuals who have mental retardation or related disabilities and that families must be supported in their role as primary caregivers. The General Assembly finds that supporting families in their effort to care for their family members at home is more efficient, cost-effective, and humane than maintaining people with mental retardation or related disabilities in out-of-home residential settings.
(B) The intent of the Family Support Services Program provided for in this chapter is to assist families who desire or choose to support a family member with mental retardation or a related disability in their home. The program is not meant to create a hardship on a family by supplanting or diverting access from other appropriate or necessary services. It is recognized that persons with mental retardation or related disabilities have the right to receive services from public and other agencies that provide services to South Carolina citizens and to have those services coordinated with the services needed because of their disabilities. It is the position of this State that children have the right to live with their families. The individual's and family's circumstances and desires must be taken into account when considering the appropriate types of services or supports which can best meet the needs of the family.
(C) In recognition of the importance of families, the following principles must be used as guidelines in developing services to support families:
(1) Families and individuals with mental retardation or related disabilities are best able to determine their own needs and should be able to make decisions concerning necessary, desirable, and appropriate services.
(2) Families should receive the support necessary to care for their family member at home.
(3) Family support is needed throughout the lifespan of an individual who has mental retardation or a related disability.
(4) Family support services should be sensitive to the unique needs, strengths, and values of the individuals and the family and should be responsive to the needs of the entire family.
(5) Family support should build on existing social networks and natural sources of support and should encourage community integration.
(6) Family support services should be provided in a manner that develops comprehensive, responsive, and flexible support to families as their needs evolve over time.
(7) Family support services should be coordinated across the numerous agencies likely to provide resources and services to families and should be provided equitably across the State.
(8) Family, individual, and community-based services should be based on the principles of sharing ordinary places, developing meaningful relationships, learning things that are useful, making choices, as well as promoting an individual's self-esteem.
(9) Family support services should be sufficient to enable families to keep their family members with mental retardation or related disabilities at home.
(10) Services provided through the Family Support Program must be coordinated closely with services received from public and other agencies and shall foster collaboration and cooperation with all agencies providing services to individuals with mental retardation or related disabilities.
(D) The General Assembly recognizes that the South Carolina Department of Mental Retardation for several years has developed and maintained a family support program that provides support services to some families with members who have mental retardation. The success of this program demonstrates the need and value of family support services. More families in the State should be able to receive appropriate services and assistance needed to stabilize the family unit.
Section 44-21-20. As used in this chapter:
(1) `Department' means the Department of Mental Retardation.
(2) `Family support' means goods and services needed by families to care for their family members with mental retardation or related disabilities and to enjoy a quality of life comparable to other community members.
(3) `Family Support Program' means a coordinated system of family support services administered by the department directly or through contracts with private nonprofit or governmental agencies across the State, or both.
Section 44-21-30. The department may contract with or make grants to agencies or individuals to provide for a Family Support Program in accordance with this chapter. Services and supports developed must be flexible to address individual family needs.
Section 44-21-40. The primary focus of the Family Support Program is supporting:
(1) families with children with mental retardation or related disabilities, twenty-one years of age and younger;
(2) persons older than twenty-one years of age with mental retardation or related disabilities who choose to live with their families;
(3) persons older than twenty-one years of age with mental retardation or related disabilities who are residing in the community in an unsupported setting, not a state or federally funded program.
Section 44-21-50. The contracted agency shall assist each family for whom services will be provided in assessing its needs and shall prepare a written plan with the person and family. The needs and preferences of the family and individual will be the basis for determining what goods and services will be provided within the resources available.
Section 44-21-60. The services in the Family Support Program include, but are not limited to, family support services coordination, information, referral, advocacy, educational materials, emergency and outreach services, and other individual and family-centered assistance services such as:
(1) respite care;
(2) personal assistance services;
(3) child care;
(4) homemaker services;
(5) minor home modifications and vehicular modifications;
(6) specialized equipment and maintenance and repair;
(7) specialized nutrition and clothing and supplies;
(8) transportation services;
(9) health-related costs not otherwise covered;
(10) licensed nursing and nurses' aid services;
(11) family counseling, training, and support groups;
(12) financial assistance;
(13) emergency services;
(14) recreation and leisure needs.
Section 44-21-70. Implementation of this chapter and the Family Support Program is contingent upon annual appropriation of sufficient funding for the program and benefits. This chapter does not establish or authorize creation of an entitlement program or benefit."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.