June 9, 2010
CITY AND COUNTY OF SAN FRANCISCO
JUVENILE PROBATION COMMISSION
JUVENILE PROBATION COMMISSION REGULAR MEETING
Regular Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
City Hall, Hearing Room 408
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
San Francisco, CA 94102
Rebecca Woodson, President
Julian Chang, Vice President
Sarah Ching Ting Wan
1. Roll call
· The Commission President called the meeting to order at 5:43 p.m. Commissioners Arellano, Chang, Wan and Woodson were present. Commissioners Albright and Beijen were excused.
· COMM Woodson welcomed returning COMM Chang and new COMM Arellano.
COMM Chang commends the staff and Chief Siffermann for their good work and said it is a pleasure to work with all the members of the Commission.
COMM Arellano expressed that it was a pleasure to be with the Commission. He has been part of city government for the past four years and looks forward to helping the juveniles in the system.
· No public comments.
· Allen Nance, Assistant Chief Probation Officer, shared his feedback from his recent trip to China, as part of a US/China delegation focused on juvenile justice. Also in attendance was Judge Julie Tang, Judge Lilian Sing, and Public Defender Patricia Lee.
· They visited a detention facility designed for juveniles which houses 750 youths. The individuals ranged from 14 thru 21 years and were committed for a variety of offenses. Each 10’x12’ room housed eight juveniles in bunk beds. The facility was clean, yet the lighting was poor, resources were limited, and there was a substantial amount of wear and tear on the facility. The expectations of the people who ran the facility were that the kids were entitled to a safe environment, but it was at a bare minimum. They also viewed a choreographed drum presentation welcoming them to the facility, which consisted of 150 kids and took six months to prepare, and observed a sporting event.
· They attended a symposium on juvenile justice. In China, there are three judges that hear every case. The design of the juvenile court room is circular and the focus is really about engaging the young person to understand why they committed the offense and the opportunity for education.
· They visited a community center where young people are committed and required to attend every day. This was an opportunity to see their community based organizations.
· COMM Chang asked about restorative justice and Mr. Nance said that one of the provinces are piloting a model and are looking at cases where the young person would not be prosecuted, but expected to meet with the victim, community and representatives from the school to resolve the matter. They are hoping to expand this to other provinces. They do not prosecute anyone younger than 14 years regardless of the offense. The MYSI model was discussed in small groups, but not at the symposium.
· There was recreational programming and some focus on vocational training, but they did not see a vocational center or schedule of events. Sports, culture and community education is a significant part of their experience.
COMM Chang asked about the front end charging officer and how much discretion is used when a juvenile is brought into the system. Mr. Nance stated that the prosecutors are the ones that receive the case from the police and the police and prosecutors decide if the case gets charged. Wherever a young person commits an offense, that jurisdiction is where the prosecution occurs. After serving their time, the youths are reconnected with their parents. There is no formal parole system, although they can maintain jurisdiction over the youth for as long as they like.
COMM Woodson asked if there was discussion regarding gang-related crimes and Mr. Nance was told that they do not have that issue in China.
a. Chief’s Report
Summary of Probation Officers Supplemental Training on Policy 8.12:
- Chief Probation Officer, William Siffermann, said the training took place on May 19th. When the department issued the policy a few years ago, it raised concerns among many members of the community, the Immigrant Rights Advocates and members of the BOS, which prompted the passage of the Sanctuary City Ordinance. The Sanctuary City Ordinance placed issues regarding a change in Policy 8.12 relating to the treatment of juveniles suspected of being undocumented. After the Rules Committee meeting, JPD was able to listen to the areas identified by the Committee, as well as the public.
- The presentation included a review of the Sanctuary City Ordinance by City Attorney Linda Ross and Chief Siffermann reviewed JPD’s Policy 8.12. Language was included that prohibited probation officers from asking juveniles or their families specifically about their immigration status, which is described in the Sanctuary City Ordinance.
- The three specific items removed from JPD’s policy includes: 1) the length of time in the country; 2) the presence of undocumented persons in the same area where they were arrested or involved in the same illegal activity; and 3) affiliation with a criminal street gang known to be comprised of undocumented persons.
- JPD felt it was important to have our officers hear what happens to kids after they are turned them over to ICE, specifically the number of youths that have returned to our system within this two year period. To date, there have been 17 instances.
- The presentation was conducted by Richard Zapata, an official with the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), the Division of Undocumented Children Services.
COMM Chang commended the Chief and staff for the thorough training and noted the following points in the presentation (pages 8, 16, 22 and 38), that “no probation officer shall ask a juvenile or their family about their immigration status” has been stressed in four different places. This is a responsive and responsible position in response to the advocacy community while still operating within state and federal law. In addition, immigration status is not a factor for consideration in detention screening by JPD staff. After ICE gets a hold of an unaccompanied alien child (UAC), referred by the federal statute, it is important to know that ICE is one of three agencies that are involved in that minors treatment. They are fulfilling the role of the enforcement/prosecutorial agency. The Department of Justice, through the administrative and immigration law judges, is the adjudicatory agency, and the Department of Health and Human Services, through ORR, is the custodial agency. It has a federal standard articulated in the Flores case, which requires that it place the UAC in the least restrictive setting appropriate to that minor’s age, while in custody. 65% of children in ORR custody are reunited with family or a qualified sponsor, and Huckleberry Youth qualifies as a qualified sponsor. COMM Chang would also like to have Richard Zapata present before the Full Commission in the near future.
COMM Woodson recognized, on behalf of the Commission, the amount of work that went into preparing this presentation. Having sat in one of the meetings with the Chief, Mr. Nance and the City Attorney, every line in this presentation was reviewed thoroughly. A lot of thought and consideration went into how this was going to be presented and emphasizes points brought to the department’s attention by the advocates. COMM Woodson commends the department for a thorough and comprehensive presentation. COMM Woodson asked in terms of developing reasonable suspicion, when does the topic of social security numbers arise? A social security number is required for placement in certain types of facilities outside of the hall. Chief Siffermann stated that the city attorney was still examining it and was one of the areas that needed follow-up.
COMM Woodson asked for a copy of the final policy once distributed to the probation officers.
- Update on the Department's efforts to address court workload in the context of potential staff reductions and improved operations.
- Chief Siffermann discussed the meeting held at Huckleberry CARC and the potential adjustments that would have to be made to manage the workload if there was a reduction in probation officers and staff. JPD looked at court interactions and hearings and are looking for ways for the officers to not only concentrate on field work. JPD prepared Approving the Operational Efficiencies of the San Francisco Juvenile Court and Probation Department and it provides court practitioner’s ideas for further development to reduce superior court bench loads, revise procedures and practices, and posed some innovative court procedures for consideration, such as a case tracking system. This document was sent to the court, public defender, bar association and prosecutor. JPD is establishing cases to present to the court to establish an administrative calendar. It is a work in progress.
- Update on the Budget by Allison Magee, Director of Administrative Services.
- Ms. Magee distributed a brief summary of the final reductions that were made in the Mayor’s budget proposal: JPD will not have layoffs for probation officers, but will have a couple of pending layoffs and layoffs effective this week; If Prop J (contracting out for food service in Juvenile Hall) is approved, seven positions will be laid off as of January 1st (four cooks and three food service workers). Three service workers will remain and one chef at LCR. This will be an annual savings of around $300,000. The BOS needs to approve this and they tend not to support contracting proposals. If not approved, the BOS would have to find the funds to make up for the estimating savings; A $250,000 reduction in the children’s base line, the CBO violence prevention program, is an on-going cut. JPD has $150,000 in one-time savings from the current year to offset for next year; A 1.5 position in probation was shifted from general to grant funds; A $350,000 reduction in attrition and no positions have been deleted. As positions are vacated, they will not be back-filled. This is about a $1,000,000 total reduction on top of the $371,000 in mid-year cuts. Our 20% target was $5.1 million and our 10% contingency was $2.6 million. The Mayor’s Office was very responsive to maintaining our need for probation officers. Ms. Magee stated that this document was the summary of the reductions and JPD will be introducing three additional staff at LCR this year (second cohort of youth beginning in July; an additional clinician; and contract with the Conservation Corp). All these changes were made using state grant dollars.
COMM Chang commended the staff for their innovative approach to the budget.
COMM Wan asked about the children’s base line violence prevention program and Ms. Magee stated that DCYF has assumed this reduction.
COMM Woodson asked about the budget presentation dates and Ms. Magee said June 17th will be the first Budget & Finance Committee hearing and the second meeting held on June 24th. The first meeting will be the introduction to what the budget looks like and the Budget Analyst will make their recommendations. The second meeting is when the Committee makes its final decision.
COMM Woodson stated the date on the budget document seemed to indicate it had been prepared several days in advance of the Commission meeting. If that is the case, the document needs to be provided to the Commission Secretary on that date - if it is in final form - for distribution to the Commissioners and posting on the website for public viewing. COMM Woodson asked Ms. Magee to provide a copy to the secretary for distribution and posting on the JPC website for the public. Sallie Gibson, City Attorney, seconded this request and said that the law is very clear that anything that goes to the Commission that is considered in a public meeting has to go to the public when it is available. If it is not available until the day of the meeting, that is fine. But if it is available beforehand, we do get a lot of complaints from the public when they realize that something has not been circulated.
- No public comments.
7. Public Comment on all matters pertaining to Closed Session 8. Vote on whether to hold Closed Session. (San Francisco Administrative Code Section 67.10) (ACTION ITEM) · COMM Chang motioned to hold a Closed Session. 9. Closed Session 10. Future Agenda Items (ACTION ITEM) Announcements from COMM Woodson: 11. Adjournment (ACTION ITEM)
· No public comments.
· No public comments.
· COMM Woodson asked if the Commissioners were in favor in holding a Closed Session and it was unanimous: 4 ayes. Motion carried.
Pursuant to Government Code section 54956.9(a) and San Francisco Administrative Code Section 67.10(d)(1): (DISCUSSION ONLY)
CONFERENCE WITH LEGAL COUNSEL: Update on Pending Litigation by Sallie Gibson
Oliphant et al. v. CCSF et al., United States District Court, Northern District of California, Case Number C08-5048
Lam et al. v. CCSF et al., United States District Court, Northern District of California, Case Number C08-4702
Raman v. CCSF et al., United States District Court, Northern District of California, Case Number C10-0752
Nnachi v. CCSF et al., United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, Case Number 10-15395
· COMM Chang motioned to keep items discussed in Item 9 closed and confidential.
· COMM Woodson asked if the Commissioners were in favor of keeping the items discussed in Item 9 closed and confidential and it was unanimous: 4 ayes. Motion carried.
Vote for Juvenile Probation Vice President.
June 24th BOS Budget update from department in August.
8. Vote on whether to hold Closed Session. (San Francisco Administrative Code Section 67.10) (ACTION ITEM)
· COMM Chang motioned to hold a Closed Session.
9. Closed Session
10. Future Agenda Items (ACTION ITEM) Announcements from COMM Woodson: 11. Adjournment (ACTION ITEM)
Announcements from COMM Woodson:
11. Adjournment (ACTION ITEM)