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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Title V
Chapter 39
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F.S. 39.01304
39.01304 Early childhood court programs.
(1) A circuit court may create an early childhood court program to serve the needs of infants and toddlers in dependency court. If a circuit court creates an early childhood court program, it may consider all of the following factors:
(a) The court supporting the therapeutic needs of the parent and child in a nonadversarial manner.
(b) A multidisciplinary team made up of key community stakeholders to work with the court to restructure the way the community responds to the needs of abused or neglected children.
(c) A community coordinator to facilitate services and resources for families, serve as a liaison between a multidisciplinary team and the judiciary, and manage data collection for program evaluation and accountability. Subject to appropriation, the Office of the State Courts Administrator may coordinate with each participating circuit court to fill a community coordinator position for the circuit’s early childhood court program.
(d) A continuum of mental health services that includes those that support the parent-child relationship and are appropriate for the children and family served.
(2) The Office of the State Courts Administrator shall contract for an evaluation of the early childhood court programs to ensure the quality, accountability, and fidelity of the programs’ evidence-based treatment. The Office of the State Courts Administrator may provide, or contract for the provision of, training and technical assistance related to program services, consultation and guidance for difficult cases, and ongoing training for court teams.
History.s. 2, ch. 2020-138.