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The Florida Senate

2009 Florida Statutes

Section 39.905, Florida Statutes 2009

39.905  Domestic violence centers.--

(1)  Domestic violence centers certified under this part must:

(a)  Provide a facility which will serve as a center to receive and house persons who are victims of domestic violence. For the purpose of this part, minor children and other dependents of a victim, when such dependents are partly or wholly dependent on the victim for support or services, may be sheltered with the victim in a domestic violence center.

(b)  Receive the annual written endorsement of local law enforcement agencies.

(c)  Provide minimum services which include, but are not limited to, information and referral services, counseling and case management services, temporary emergency shelter for more than 24 hours, a 24-hour hotline, training for law enforcement personnel, assessment and appropriate referral of resident children, and educational services for community awareness relative to the incidence of domestic violence, the prevention of such violence, and the care, treatment, and rehabilitation for persons engaged in or subject to domestic violence. If a 24-hour hotline, professional training, or community education is already provided by a certified domestic violence center within a district, the department may exempt such certification requirements for a new center serving the same district in order to avoid duplication of services.

(d)  Participate in the provision of orientation and training programs developed for law enforcement officers, social workers, and other professionals and paraprofessionals who work with domestic violence victims to better enable such persons to deal effectively with incidents of domestic violence.

(e)  Establish and maintain a board of directors composed of at least three citizens, one of whom must be a member of a local, municipal, or county law enforcement agency.

(f)  Comply with rules adopted pursuant to this part.

(g)  File with the department a list of the names of the domestic violence advocates who are employed or who volunteer at the domestic violence center who may claim a privilege under s. 90.5036 to refuse to disclose a confidential communication between a victim of domestic violence and the advocate regarding the domestic violence inflicted upon the victim. The list must include the title of the position held by the advocate whose name is listed and a description of the duties of that position. A domestic violence center must file amendments to this list as necessary.

(h)  Demonstrate local need and ability to sustain operations through a history of 18 consecutive months' operation as a domestic violence center, including 12 months' operation of an emergency shelter as provided in paragraph (c), and a business plan which addresses future operations and funding of future operations.

(i)  If its center is a new center applying for certification, demonstrate that the services provided address a need identified in the most current statewide needs assessment approved by the department.

(2)  If the department finds that there is failure by a center to comply with the requirements established under this part or with the rules adopted pursuant thereto, the department may deny, suspend, or revoke the certification of the center.

(3)  The annual certificate shall automatically expire on the termination date shown on the certificate.

(4)  The domestic violence centers shall establish procedures pursuant to which persons subject to domestic violence may seek services from these centers voluntarily.

(5)  Domestic violence centers may be established throughout the state when private, local, state, or federal funds are available.

(6)  In order to receive state funds, a center must:

(a)  Obtain certification pursuant to this part. However, the issuance of a certificate will not obligate the department to provide funding.

(b)  Receive at least 25 percent of its funding from one or more local, municipal, or county sources, public or private. Contributions in kind, whether materials, commodities, transportation, office space, other types of facilities, or personal services, may be evaluated and counted as part of the required local funding.

(7)(a)  All funds collected and appropriated to the domestic violence program for certified domestic violence centers shall be distributed annually according to an allocation formula approved by the department. In developing the formula, the factors of population, rural characteristics, geographical area, and the incidence of domestic violence shall be considered.

(b)  A contract between the statewide association and a certified domestic violence center shall contain provisions assuring the availability and geographic accessibility of services throughout the district. For this purpose, a center may distribute funds through subcontracts or to center satellites, provided such arrangements and any subcontracts are approved by the statewide association.

History.--s. 5, ch. 78-281; s. 4, ch. 79-402; s. 2, ch. 82-135; s. 4, ch. 82-192; s. 3, ch. 84-128; s. 5, ch. 84-343; s. 32, ch. 94-134; s. 32, ch. 94-135; ss. 3, 8, ch. 95-187; s. 117, ch. 98-403; s. 2, ch. 2003-11.

Note.--Former s. 409.605; s. 415.605.