EXECUTIVE ORDER No. 2010 - 18

DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES
GOVERNOR'S TASK FORCE ON CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT

WHEREAS, Section 1 of Article V of the Michigan Constitution of 1963 vests the executive power of the State of Michigan in the Governor;

WHEREAS, under Section 8 of Article V of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, each principal department of state government is under the supervision of the Governor unless otherwise provided by the Constitution;

WHEREAS, under Section 8 of Article V of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, the Governor is responsible to take care that the laws be faithfully executed;

WHEREAS, a primary interest of this state is to promote and enhance the best interests of children residing in Michigan;

WHEREAS, improving the handling of child abuse and neglect cases, particularly child cases involving sexual abuse and exploitation, is of utmost importance to the well-being of Michigan children and families;

WHEREAS, the failure to coordinate and comprehensively improve the handling of child abuse and neglect cases may threaten the future of thousands of Michigan children;

WHEREAS, Section 107 of the federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, as amended by the federal Keeping Children and Families Safe Act of 2003, Public Law 108-36, 42 USC 5106c, authorizes grants to states for the purpose of assisting states in developing, establishing, and operating programs designed to improve:  (1) the handling of child abuse and neglect cases, particularly cases of child sexual abuse and exploitation, in a manner that limits additional trauma to the child victim; (2) the handling of cases of suspected child abuse or neglect related fatalities; (3) the investigation and prosecution of cases of child abuse and neglect, particularly child sexual abuse and exploitation; and (4) the handling of cases involving children with disabilities or serious health-related problems who are victims of abuse or neglect;

WHEREAS, to qualify for grants to states under Section 107 of the federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, a state must establish or designate and maintain a multidisciplinary task force on children's justice;

WHEREAS, because this state remains committed to continual improvement in the handling of child abuse and neglect cases and to securing federal funding for such efforts, it is appropriate to refocus the activities of the Governor's Task Force on Children's Justice originally established by Executive Order 1991-38 through a newly focused Governor's Task Force on Child Abuse and Neglect consistent with changes provided for in the Keeping Children and Families Safe Act of 2003;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Jennifer M. Granholm, Governor of the State of Michigan, by virtue of the power and authority vested in the Governor by the Michigan Constitution of 1963 and Michigan law, order the following:

I. DEFINITIONS

As used in this Order:

A. "Civil Service Commission" means the commission created under Section 5 of Article XI of the Michigan Constitution of 1963.

B. "Department of Human Services" or "Department" means the principal department of state government created as the Department of Social Services under Section 450 of the Executive Organization Act of 1965, 1965 PA 380, MCL 16.550, renamed the Family Independence Agency under 1995 PA 223, MCL 400.1, and renamed the Department of Human Services under Executive Order 2004-38, MCL 400.266.

C. "Department of Technology, Management, and Budget" means the principal department of state government created as the Department of Management and Budget under Section 121 of The Management and Budget Act, 1984 PA 431, MCL 18.1121, and renamed under Executive Order 2009-55, MCL 18.441.

D. "Task Force" means the Governor's Task Force on Child Abuse and Neglect created within the Department of Human Services under Section II of this Order.

II.  CREATION OF THE TASK FORCE

A. The Governor's Task Force on Child Abuse and Neglect is established within the Department of Human Services.  The Task Force shall exercise its powers and duties independently of the Department.

B. The Task Force is designated as the multidisciplinary task force for this state for purposes of Section 107(c) of the federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, 42 USC 5106c(c).

C. The Task Force shall consist of not more than 35 members appointed by the Governor and shall be composed of professionals with knowledge and experience relating to the criminal justice system and issues of child physical abuse, child neglect, child sexual abuse and exploitation, and child maltreatment related fatalities.  Members of the Task Force shall include all of the following:

1. Individuals representing the law enforcement community.

2. Judges and attorneys involved in both civil and criminal court proceedings related to child abuse and neglect, including individuals involved with the defense and the prosecution of child abuse and neglect cases.

3. Child advocates, including both attorneys for children and court appointed special advocates.

4. Health and mental health professionals.

5. Individuals representing child protective services agencies.

6. Parents, including, but not limited to, parents experienced in working with children with disabilities.

7. Individuals representing parents' groups.

D. Members of the Task Force under Section II.C also may include other adult residents of this state who, as children, may or may not have been involved with the system for child abuse and neglect.

E. Members of the Task Force shall be appointed for a term of 4 years.  A vacancy on the Task Force occurring other than by expiration of a term shall be filled by the Governor in the same manner as the original appointment for the balance of the unexpired term.  A member of the Task Force may be reappointed for subsequent additional terms.

F. The Governor shall designate a member of the Task Force to serve as Chairperson of the Task Force for a period coterminous with the member's term as a member of the Task Force.  The Chairperson of the Task Force shall appoint a member of the Task Force to serve as Vice-Chairperson of the Task Force at the pleasure of the Chairperson of the Task Force.

G. The Task Force may establish and disband committees consisting of members of the Task Force as deemed necessary by the Task Force.  The Chairperson of the Task Force shall appoint a chairperson for each committee established by the Task Force to serve as committee chairperson at the pleasure of the Chairperson of the Task Force.  The chairperson of each committee established by the Task Force, the Chairperson of the Task Force, and the Vice-Chairperson of the Task Force shall constitute the Executive Committee of the Task Force.

III. CHARGE TO THE TASK FORCE

A. Not less than once every 3 years, the Task Force shall comprehensively review and evaluate state investigative, administrative, civil judicial handling, and criminal judicial handling of all of the following:

1. Cases of child abuse and neglect, particularly child sexual abuse and exploitation.

2. Cases involving suspected child maltreatment related fatalities.

3. Cases of child abuse and neglect involving a potential combination of jurisdictions, including, but not limited to, interstate, federal-state, and state-tribal.

B. At least once every 3 years, the Task Force shall comprehensively make policy and training recommendations to the Governor, the Michigan Supreme Court, and the Michigan Legislature in each of the following categories:

1. Investigative, administrative, and judicial handing of all of the following in a manner that reduces any additional trauma to a child victim and the victim's family and that also ensures procedural fairness to the accused:

a. Cases of child abuse and neglect, particularly child sexual abuse and exploitation.

b. Cases involving suspected child maltreatment related fatalities.

c. Cases of child abuse and neglect involving a potential combination of jurisdictions, including, but not limited to, interstate, federal-state, and state-tribal.

2. Experimental, model, and demonstration programs for testing innovative approaches and techniques that improve the prompt and successful resolution of civil and criminal court proceedings or enhance the effectiveness of judicial and administrative action in child abuse and neglect cases, particularly child sexual abuse and exploitation cases, including the enhancement of the performance of court-appointed attorneys and guardians ad litem for children, and that also ensure procedural fairness to the accused.

3. Reform of state laws, ordinances, regulations, protocols, procedures, and rules to provide comprehensive protection for children from abuse, particularly child sexual abuse and exploitation, while ensuring fairness to all affected persons.

C. The Task Force shall function as a statewide coordinating council to oversee the implementation of recommendations of the Task Force under Section III.B.  Acting as the statewide coordinating council, the Task Force shall develop both of the following:

1. Model statewide protocols adaptable to local needs.

2. A statewide comprehensive initiative to disseminate and encourage the proper use of protocols and to educate the public about child abuse and neglect, particularly child sexual abuse and exploitation.

D. The Task Force shall make other comments and recommendations relating to child abuse and neglect to the Governor, the Michigan Supreme Court, and the Michigan Legislature that the Task Force considers relevant and useful.

E. The Task Force shall perform other functions related to the Task Force's duties as requested by the Governor.

IV. OPERATIONS OF THE TASK FORCE

A. The Task Force shall be staffed and assisted by personnel from the Department, subject to available funding.  Any budgeting, procurement, or related management functions of the Task Force shall be performed under the direction and supervision of the Director of the Department and the Chairperson of the Task Force.  Consistent with any applicable rules or regulations of the Civil Service Commission, personnel assigned by the Department to assist the Task Force in performing duties under Section III shall be selected and approved by the Chairperson of the Task Force or other Task Force member designated by the Chairperson of the Task Force.

B. The Task Force shall adopt procedures consistent with applicable law and this Order governing its organization and operations.

C. A majority of the members serving on the Task Force constitutes a quorum for the transaction of the Task Force's business.  The Task Force shall act by a majority vote of its members in attendance.  In the event of an emergency, as determined by the Chairperson of the Task Force, the Task Force may act by a majority vote of the Executive Committee.  The Executive Committee shall report on any action taken by the Executive Committee in the event of an emergency to all of the members of the Task Force.

D. The Task Force shall meet at the call of the Chairperson and as may be provided in procedures adopted by the Task Force.

E. The Task Force may establish subcommittees of Task Force members and advisory workgroups composed of public officers, public employees, or members of the public who are not members of the Task Force.  The Task Force may adopt, reject, or modify any recommendations proposed by a subcommittee or an advisory workgroup.

F. The Task Force may, as appropriate, make inquiries, conduct studies or investigations, hold hearings, and receive comments from the public.  The Task Force also may consult with outside experts in order to perform its duties including, but not limited to, experts in the private sector, organized labor, government agencies, tribal governments, and at institutions of higher education.

G. Members of the Task Force shall serve without compensation.  Members of the Task Force may receive reimbursement for necessary travel and expenses according to relevant statutes and the rules and procedures of the Department of Technology, Management, and Budget and the Civil Service Commission, subject to available funding.

H. The Task Force may hire or retain contractors, sub-contractors, advisors, consultants, and agents, and may make and enter into contracts necessary or incidental to the exercise of the powers of the Task Force and the performance of its duties, in accordance with this Order, and the relevant statutes, rules, and procedures of the Department of Technology, Management, and Budget and the Civil Service Commission, subject to available funding.

I. The Task Force may accept donations of labor, services, or other things of value from any public or private agency or person.

J. All departments, boards, commissioners, or officers of this state, or of any political subdivision of this state, shall cooperate with the Task Force and give to the Task Force or to any representative of the Task Force, any necessary assistance required by the Task Force or their representative in the performance of their duties as Task Force members.  Task Force members shall be given free access to any policy-related or technical information held by any department, board, commissioner, or officer of this state including books, records, or documents in their possession relating to matters within the scope of inquiry, study, or review of the Task Force.

K. When requested by the Task Force, the judicial branch of state government is respectfully requested to assist the Task Force in performing its duties under this Order.

L. Members of the Task Force shall refer all legal, legislative, and media contacts to the Department.

V. RESCISSION OF EXECUTIVE ORDERS

A. The Governor's Task Force on Children's Justice created under Executive Orders 1991-38 and 1993-8 is abolished.  The Governor's Task Force on Child Abuse and Neglect shall be the successor to the Governor's Task Force on Children's Justice.

B. Executive Order 1991-38 is rescinded in its entirety.

C. Executive Order 1993-8 is rescinded in its entirety.

VI. MISCELLANEOUS

A. Any suit, action, or other proceeding lawfully commenced by, against, or before any entity affected by this Order shall not abate by reason of the taking effect of this Order.

B. The invalidity of any portion of this Order shall not affect the validity of the remainder of the Order, which may be given effect without any invalid portion.  Any portion of this Order found invalid by a court or other entity with proper jurisdiction shall be severable from the remaining portions of this Order.

C. This order is effective September 1, 2010.

Given under my hand and the Great Seal of the State of Michigan this 18th day of August, in the year of our Lord, two thousand and ten.


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JENNIFER M. GRANHOLM
GOVERNOR

BY THE GOVERNOR:


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Secretary of State