Colorado Department of inHumane Services and APS Debacle Continues- Rule Making

Written by Maureen Welch, Volunteer Activist

Video credit to David Owen, Family Advocate, Camera man extraordinaire! 

Child Welfare rules state that the "age of culpability" is 11 years of age. 

In proposed rule packet 3, scheduled for State Board on May 4, minors from ages 11-17 could be substantiated with abuse, neglect, exploitation and self neglect charges.

  • Here is a link to a video clip from March 28, 2018 Stakeholder meeting confirmation HERE.
  • APS violates all civil rights of children, declaring them "substantiated" without access to legal counsel. 
  • APS violates the Sixth Amendment in the process.
  • The APS administrative investigation is secretive, these situations would likely also alert Child Protective Services action.
  • Children are children. Let them be that. They learn as they grow. They should not be on a blacklist as minors!  Let them eat donuts!
  • It is concerning especially as peer on peer issues are common, and adolescents and especially the intellectually and developmentally disabled should not have an adult label placed administratively. 
  • A charge of self-neglect between 11-17 years of age seems preposterous.

There is a pattern of CDHS exceeding the statutory language in promulgating rules and stepping out of bounds to write law.

  • The two areas of biggest concern are the severity levels in rule packet 2 (up for State Board vote on April 6)  and the age 11 as "age of culpability" in rule packet 3 (presented to State Board on May 4)  .

  • Neither take direction from HC17-1284 but rather they are replicating Child Welfare rules.   

  • This is not the intent of the legislature.

  • These clips are from the March 28, 2018 meeting. This short video clip with independent advocate Jim Tatten, who happens to have a law degree, is about the fact that the Department is not a law making body and exceeding statute is wrong. HERE


Family Caregivers and small PASAs can be investigated and put on the Registry as Substantiated "perpetrators" and never see the accusations or investigation information (per the rules, one needs a court order to get access).
Also APS can apply for guardianship and change the person's placement, and service plans. 

Believe it, it is happening now. 
 

  •  Your Best protection is to LAWYER UP Remember even if you know you have done nothing wrong.
  • It is best to refuse to talk to APS without your counsel present.
  • This can stop the harassment. 
  • Also consider a Colorado civil rights complaint, fast, free, no attorney needed and done online/over phone HERE !
  • Read www.changecoidd.com past newsletter about Colorado Civil Rights Commission under the News Tab.

State Board for Human Service Meeting on Friday April 6, 2018
Colorado Department of Human Services, 1575 Sherman Street, 8th Floor, Denver, CO 80203.


8am State APS 101 Presentation to Board
10am Regular Work Meeting,

General open Public comment at start of meeting at 10 in person or over phone (must give notice for this accommodation).
You can also submit written comment to beth.kline@state.co.us .
Later, during agenda,  public comment is limited to Rule Packet 2 feedback.

State Board Website link here 
Link to documents here
Live Meeting Broadcasts

CDHS broadcasts all State Board meetings. Click to join the live GoToMeeting broadcast. 

Or call 866-899-4679 to listen by phone. Access Code: 758-645-967

Please be advised that the time and place for scheduled meetings is subject to change and the broadcasts will only occur when meetings are in session. A "waiting for organizer" message may appear if access to the service is attempted prior to launching of the broadcast. If you receive this message, wait a few minutes and try again. Potential unforeseen technical difficulties may affect availability of the broadcast. After clicking the meeting link, you may be prompted to install the GoToMeetings application. Follow the onscreen instructions, and the meeting will launch once the application has installed. 

If during the broadcast you lose the connection, click the broadcast link again to rejoin the meeting.

If you have any suggestions or comments, please e-mail our technical support team.Live Meeting Broadcasts CDHS broadcasts all State Board meetings. Click to join the live GoToMeeting broadcast. Please be advised that the time and place for scheduled meetings is subject to change and the broadcasts will only occur when meetings are in session. A "waiting for organizer" message may appear if access to the service is attempted prior to launching of the broadcast. If you receive this message, wait a few minutes and try again. Potential unforeseen technical difficulties may affect availability of the broadcast. After clicking the meeting link, you may be prompted to install the GoToMeetings application. Follow the onscreen instructions, and the meeting will launch once the application has installed. If during the broadcast you lose the connection, click the broadcast link again to rejoin the meeting. If you have any suggestions or comments, please e-mail our technical support team.

Remote Testimony
The State Board meetings are broadcasted by webinar. Members of the public should call in to the listen-only line. Please note the line is unmuted during public testimony so that registered individuals may speak. 
If you wish to testify remotely, you will need to register with the State Board Administrator by 10:00 A.M. on the previous business day. Email beth.kline@state.co.us with the following information:
1. Your name. Use the same name when logging in to testify.
2. Name of group or organization you represent.
3. Agenda item (public comment or rule number).
4. Mailing address.
5. Whether you support or oppose the rule.
6. Written summary as backup is encouraged.


You may be under investigation by Adult Protective Services and not even know it!

That is because the rules don't require notification until the end, at point of substantiation. Then to appeal it can take up to 18 months to do an administrative appeal OR one can take APS to court where there is assured due process. The CAPS registry has a low bar for "preponderance" of evidence. Also only APS can actually see the files for, for anyone including persons involved with the investigation, CAN ONLY see their files with a Court Order, which requires a judge.

Chronic health conditions which require Emergency Room visits can also trigger APS involvement, including investigations PASAs.  A short video clip with former Senator Rob Hernandez on this topic from 3.28.18 is HERE 


Do you run a PASA? Do you remember the HPE/DXC medicaid revalidation debacle? Many PASAs are still struggling with that and now THIS with CDHS?

 The Colorado Department of  Human Services will have 30 days period before start date (in December of course) for employers to register for the required background checks in Adult Protective Services CAPS system. Then on January 1, 2019 employers will pay up to $35 per employee (this could go even higher if lots of appeals happen) for employment registry check and wait up to 10 days for the manual check. 

This is the administrative process of substantiating not criminal. Due process with "preponderance of evidence" is severely lacking under CDHS Administrative process. Law enforcement is separate with a much higher criminal "beyond reasonable doubt" measure.