Subject 125-4-9 FAMILY VIOLENCE INTERVENTION PROGRAM
These rules are adopted and published in accordance with the Official Code of Georgia Annotated O.C.G.A. § 19-13-10, et seq.
These rules are known as the Rules for Family Violence Intervention Programs. The purpose of the rules is to provide for the administration and certification of Family Violence Intervention Programs by the Department of Corrections and to provide for the enforcement of certification and program requirements and for the inspection and investigation of such programs and staff, by the Department of Corrections.
Unless the context requires otherwise, the terms used in these rules mean the following:
|(a)||"Participant" means a person who commits an act of "family violence" as that term is defined below.|
|(b)||"Certification fee" means the fee that is assessed by the Department for consideration of an application for program certification.|
|(c)||"Class" means a group of two or more batterers who are simultaneously participating in an FVIP.|
|(d)||"Commission" means the State Commission on Family Violence.|
|(e)||"Community Task Force on Family Violence" or "CTF" means a community based family violence task force that is supported by and working in collaboration with the Commission that is responsible for coordinating the community's response to family violence.|
|(f)||"Department" means the Georgia Department of Corrections.|
|(g)||"DHR" means the Georgia Department of Human Resources.|
|(h)||"Facilitator" means a batterers intervention group leader.|
violence" means the occurrence of one or more of the following acts
between past or present spouses, persons who are parents of the same child,
parents and children, stepparents and stepchildren, foster parents and foster
children, or other persons living or formerly living in the same household:
|(j)||"Family Violence Intervention Program" or "FVIP" means any program which is certified pursuant to these rules.|
|(k)||"Family" or "household member" means past or present spouses, persons who are parents of the same child, parents and children, stepparents and stepchildren, foster parents and foster children, or other persons living or formerly living in the same household.|
|(l)||"Lateness" means arriving to a class after the class has started at its scheduled time.|
|(m)||"Monitor" means an agent of the Department trained and authorized to conduct monitoring of the administrative and/or programmatic components of FVIPs.|
|(n)||"Office of Certification and Monitoring" means the office, within the Department, which is responsible for the certification and monitoring of FVIPs.|
|(o)||"Person" means any individual, agent, representative, governing or operating authority, board, organization, partnership, agency, association, corporation, or other entity, whether public or private.|
|(p)||"Provider" means a person that provides an FVIP.|
|(q)||"SOP" means a standard operating procedure of the Department.|
|(r)||"Trainee" means a person in the process of becoming certified as a facilitator as required by these regulations.|
|(s)||"Trainer" means a person providing Commission-approved training that may be credited toward the training and continuing education requirements for program facilitators.|
|(t)||"Victim" means the family or household member against whom the batterer has committed, or is committing, acts of family violence.|
|(u)||"Victim liaison" means a person who is a victim advocate, who has received domestic violence victim safety training, paid and subcontracted by the FVIP, and who works in a domestic violence organization that primarily serves battered women and their children.|
|(a)||Certification Required. No
program may accept a participant who is referred to the program by a court or
the State Board of Pardons and Paroles pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 19-13-16 without first being
certified by the Department as set forth herein.
|(a)||Initial Certification. Upon receipt of all required application materials the Commission will undertake a review of the application materials for purposes of determining whether the program meets all certification requirements. If the Commission determines that the program meets all program certification requirements and the standards for course content and qualifications of instructors, the Commission shall certify the program.|
|(b)||Revocation of Certification. Once certified, the failure of an FVIP to begin holding classes within six months of certification and to continuously operate in compliance with these rules and regulations (with no more than a three month break in instruction) will result in revocation of certification.|
|(c)||Denial of Initial Certification.
Initial certification will be denied if:
|(d)||Notice of Denial of Initial Certification. The Department will advise the applicant who is denied program certification, in writing, of the reasons for its decision to deny program certification. The applicant will then have twenty days from the date of the Department's denial of certification to submit additional documentation or otherwise complete the application as may be required by the Department. If the applicant again fails to demonstrate compliance with all certification requirements the Department shall deny certification.|
|(e)||Ongoing Certification. Once initially certified, an FVIP will remain certified for a period of two years so long as the FVIP's certification is not suspended or revoked by the Department. The Department may require any program applicant or FVIP to submit additional information or verification that is reasonably related to making a determination regarding initial certification or continued compliance with program requirements.|
|(f)||Non-transferability of Certification. Certification of an FVIP is not transferable. If there is a change in FVIP ownership, applications for new (initial) certifications must be submitted to the Department by the proposed program provider at least 60 days prior to the effective date of any change in program ownership. All new program providers must meet all certification requirements. New program providers must return the old program certificate to the Department prior to receiving a new certificate.|
Model. While certified programs may use various curricula in running
programs, all certified programs will use an educational model of group
intervention that adheres to the following principles regarding family
|(b)||Appropriate Intervention Practices.
Appropriate intervention practices are identified in Department SOP.
Every program must, at a minimum, incorporate the following intervention
|(c)||Prohibited Intervention Practices. Prohibited intervention
practices are detailed in Department SOP. The following is a list of
intervention practices that are specifically prohibited from inclusion in
Each program shall be structured as follows:
|(a)||Orientation and Intake/Screening Interview - Programs will conduct an initial orientation and an intake/screening interview. Intake/screening interviews will be conducted according to Department SOP. Programs may charge separate fees for the orientation and the intake/screening interview. Neither the orientation nor the intake/screening interview count toward the 24 class requirement.|
|(b)||Contract Execution - Each participant will be required to sign a contract before being permitted entry into the program.|
|(d)||Class Fees and Sliding Fee Scale: FVIPs will charge a fee of between $5 to $50 per class. FVIPs must have a written indigent fee reduction plan for participants declared indigent by the court.|
|(e)||Prohibited Program Activities
- FVIPs are prohibited from the following:
Listed below are the minimum requirements for facilitators and restrictions on FVIP personnel. FVIPs will maintain documentation that all FVIP personnel meet these requirements.
|(a)||Program Hiring Limitations.
FVIPs are restricted in hiring as follows:
|(b)||Facilitator Educational and
|(a)|| FVIPs shall require that participants
sign a contract to:
|(b)||Criteria for terminating participant from an FVIP.
|(a)||Approval of Training. The
Commission must approve all training used to fulfill FVIP facilitators'
requirements for initial and ongoing training. To be considered for approval,
the following items shall be sent to the Commission:
|(b)||Agreement. All trainer applicants must agree to allow Department staff or monitors, and/or victim liaisons to observe and monitor training.|
|(c)||Approval: The Department will approve training at its discretion based upon training content and approval criteria detailed in Department SOP.|
|(d)||Withdrawn Approval: Approval by GCFV can be withdrawn at any time if the training encourages or teaches any concept in violation of the state minimum standards for FVIPs.|
|(a)||FVIPs must allow scheduled and unscheduled monitoring visits by Department staff and monitors or Community Family Violence Task Force monitors. Monitoring may consist of both administrative review and group observation.|
|(b)||FVIPs must maintain adequate documentation to ensure compliance with these minimum standards.|
|(c)||Records of Personnel and Contract Workers. FVIPs are required to maintain personnel records for each FVIP employee and/or contract worker (excluding the subcontracted victim liaison). Each such personnel file shall contain the employee's and/or contract worker's name, address, home phone number, social security number, date of birth, a recent clear photograph, and emergency contact information. Each personnel file shall also contain documentation of any civil or criminal proceedings involving family violence. FVIPs must also maintain signed job descriptions; signed drug-free workplace policy statements, signed sexual harassment policy statements, and documented employment, reference, and GCIC checks. In addition, facilitators' records must include a current and complete resume or official transcript and other detailed documentation that specifies where and when the facilitator has met the educational, experiential and training requirements required by these regulations, and a signed violence-free lifestyle statement.|
|(d)||FVIPs must respond to corrective action plans issued by the Department within the Department's required time frame in order to come into full compliance.|
|(e)||Upon request of the Commission or the Community Family Violence Task Force monitors, classes shall be recorded for the purpose of monitoring FVIP compliance with certification standards.|
The Department shall have the authority to deny, suspend, and revoke certification of an FVIP for noncompliance with FVIP requirements. Additionally, the Department shall have the authority to assess an administrative fine against any FVIP for noncompliance with FVIP requirements.
|(a)|| Grounds for denial,
suspension, revocation of certification, or assessment of an administrative
fine. The Department may base the denial, suspension, revocation of
certification, or assessment of an administrative fine upon any of the
following applicable grounds:
|(b)||Choice of revocation or suspension of certification, or the assessment of an administrative fine. The Department, in its discretion, may choose whether to impose suspension or revocation of certification, or the assessment of an administrative fine against an FVIP. In considering which to impose, the Department may consider the FVIP's history of compliance, the seriousness of the violations, whether the FVIP voluntarily reported problems giving rise to any violation, and whether the FVIP exhibited good faith efforts to correct areas of noncompliance prior or subsequent to their discovery by the Department.|
|(c)||Administrative fines. The Department has the authority to assess an administrative fine, not to exceed $1,000.00 per violation, against any person, firm, or corporation that the Department determines to have violated any provision of the Title 19, Chapter 13, Article 1A of the Official Code Georgia Code or any order, rule, or regulation promulgated thereunder. In determining the amount of the fine, the Department may consider the seriousness of the violation, whether the same or any other program requirement has been violated previously by the same program owner, director, or facilitator, and whether procedures designated to prevent the violation were in place and were followed.|
|(d)||Effectuation of suspension or revocation. If suspension or revocation of certification is imposed in accordance with the provisions of Sec. 50-13-18 of the Georgia Administrative Procedures Act, the FVIP must return said certification to the Department. The certification must be returned within ten days of the FVIP's receipt of the notification of the Department's final decision regarding suspension or revocation. The suspension or revocation becomes effective on the date indicated by the Department's order, but no time will be credited to the period of suspension or revocation until the affected certificate(s) have been received by the Department. Upon termination of any period of suspension, and upon a showing that the program has achieved full compliance with program requirements in addition to meeting any reinstatement requirements, the Department shall reissue the certification. However, nothing in these rules shall be construed to prevent the Department from denying program certification prior to any hearing on such action.|
|(e)||Reapplying for certification after revocation. A program that has had its certification revoked may not reapply for certification for 18 months from the date of the revocation. The date of a revocation is the date of receipt of the revocation letter or the date a revocation appeal is denied, whichever is later. Reapplying for certification shall be subject to the same procedures as if the program were applying for certification for the first time. However, the Department may consider a program's past violations of these rules in deciding whether to approve or deny recertification.|
All enforcement actions resulting from the enforcement Chapter shall be administered in accordance with Chapter 13 of Title 50 of the Official Code of Georgia, the "Georgia Administrative Procedures Act." The Department shall notify the FVIP or program applicant of any intended enforcement action. Any such notice shall set forth the proposed action or actions and the factual and legal basis or bases therefore. An FVIP or program desiring a hearing in response to an enforcement action against it must make a request in writing and must submit the request to the Department no later than ten (10) calendar days from the date of receipt of any notice of intent by the Department to take an enforcement action.
In the event that any rule, sentence, clause or phrase of any of these rules and regulations may be construed by any court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, illegal, unconstitutional, or otherwise unenforceable, such determination or adjudication shall in no manner affect the remaining rules or portions thereof. The remaining rules or portions thereof shall remain in full force and effect, as if such rule or portions thereof so determined, declared, or adjudicated invalid or unconstitutional were not originally a part of these rules.