JLARC Votes to Adopt Report on Homeless Youth

The Joint Legislative Audit & Review Committee Members voted to adopt a report on unaccompanies homeless youth this week.

The Joint Legislative Audit & Review Committee (JLARC) presented the results of its study on state-funded programs and services provided to unaccompanied homeless youth as directed by the Homeless Youth Prevention and Protection Act.  This Act transferred three programs from the Department of Social and Health Services to the Department of Commerce (Commerce) – Street Youth Services, Crisis Residential Centers, and HOPE Centers.

This study resulted in three specific recommendations for Commerce to puruse with regard to its programs:

(1) Commerce should develop program-specific performance measures and incorporate performance measurements into grant agreements beginning in fiscal year 2018;

(2) Commerce should brief legislative committees about how current consent law is interpreted, its effect on collecting data from homeless youth, and the potential impacts and trade-offs of collecting this data to evaluate program outcomes; and

(3) Commerce and the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction should issue joint guidance to counties and school districts, and clarify how they can work together to improve estimates of the unaccompanied homeless youth population.

This report, and its recommendations, were adopted on January 4th by the JLARC members.

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Juliana Roe comes to WSAC with almost a decade of experience working as non-partisan staff in the Washington State Senate. She has a strong legal background and knowledge of our court system as she served as a law clerk for Chief Justice Alexander for the Washington State Supreme Court, as well as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for the Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office. Juliana received her Juris Doctorate from Seattle University School of Law, and her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Washington. She represents WSAC on issues relating to public safety, law and justice, and human services.