Status Update on Restoration/Competency Work Group Activities
COMMITTEE ON TREATMENT OF PERSONS WITH MENTAL ILLNESS IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM
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01:32 PM -- Status Update on Restoration/Competency Work Group Activities
Sheri Danz, MICJS Task Force member as the representative of the Office of the Child's Representative, discussed the work of the Competency Restoration Subcommittee of the MICJS Task Force. She outlined the work that the MICJS Task Force has done in the past concerning restoration and competency issues. She referenced the MICJS Task Force retreat that was held on September 25, 2015. She stated that instead of focusing on the definition of juvenile competency, the Competency Restoration Subcommittee is now focusing on restoration services. She stated that the subcommittee meets monthly and listed the agencies that are represented on the subcommittee.
Ms. Danz answered questions from the committee members about what currently happens to juveniles who are awaiting restoration services. She briefly discussed the curriculum that is used for juvenile restoration services. Ms. Danz referenced the delays that can occur in the court proceedings that involve juvenile competency issues. She discussed the comparative analysis with other states that that the subcommittee has conducted regarding juvenile restoration services. Ms. Danz listed Florida, Maryland, and Virginia as states that could be used as possible models for juvenile restoration services. She explained that Colorado law does not clearly identify which entity is designated to provide restoration services. She discussed the potential underreporting of data concerning competency restoration services ordered in juvenile cases. She stated that the subcommittee is working to develop a survey to send to practitioners in the juvenile justice field concerning restoration services. She stated that it is possible that the subcommittee will come forth with a recommendation that Colorado list in state law the singular designated entity responsible for contracting for competency restoration services. Ms. Danz reviewed the guiding principles that could be outlined in state law for the delivery of juvenile competency restoration services.
Ms. Danz answered questions from the committee about competency restoration services and how it is determined if someone is restored to competency. She referenced the Models for Change publication entitled Developing Statutes for Competence to Stand Trial in Juvenile Delinquency Proceedings: A Guide for Lawmakers by Dr. Kimberly Larson and Dr. Thomas Grisso.
Amanda King, Legislative Council Staff, answered a question about a memorandum on juvenile competency statutes and model legislation that was prepared by Legislative Council Staff (Attachment B). Ms. Danz discussed the existing research the subcommittee has reviewed.
Ms. Danz discussed the subcommittee's activities related to adult competency restoration services. She referenced litigation regarding adult competency evaluations. Ms. Danz stated the next step for the subcommittee is engaging the Office of Behavioral Health in the Department of Human Services. Ms. Danz answered questions about the involvement of the Department of Corrections in the subcommittee's activities. In response to a question, Ms. Danz further discussed the competency restoration services provided in Virginia and how that state could be a model for Colorado. Ms. Danz responded to questions about how many juveniles are referred for restoration competency services. She referenced the Joint Budget Committee's FY 2016-17 Staff Budget Briefing - Judicial Branch document. Ms. Danz emphasized the importance of including a data collection component in any subcommittee recommendations regarding competency restoration.
Representative Singer referenced the MICJS Advisory Task Force Members list (Attachment C) that was provided to the committee members. He asked that the committee be provided a list of the subcommittee members. The committee discussed identifying Legislative Oversight Committee members to work with the subcommittee on restoration competency issues.