Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 22. Social Services
Agency 40. Department of Social Services
Chapter 131. Standards for Licensed Child-Placing Agencies

22VAC40-131-190. Home environment.

A. The home shall provide sufficient appropriate space and furnishings for each child receiving care in the home including:

1. Storage space to keep clothing and other personal belongings;

2. Accessible basin and toilet facilities;

3. Bed furniture equipped with clean, safe, and comfortable sleeping furnishings;

4. Sleeping space on the first floor of the home for a child unable to use stairs unassisted, other than a child who can be easily and safely carried; and

5. Space for recreational activities.

B. Fans or other cooling systems shall be used when the temperature of inside areas occupied by children in care exceeds 80° F.

C. The temperature in all inside areas occupied by children in care shall be maintained no lower that 65° F.

D. Rooms and study space used by children in care shall have adequate and sufficient lighting for activities and safety.

E. The provider and children in care shall have access to a working telephone in the home.

F. Multiple children in care who share a bedroom shall have adequate space including closet and storage space. Bedrooms shall have adequate square footage for each child in care to have personal space.

G. Children in care over the age of two years shall not share a bed.

H. Children in care over the age of two shall not share a bedroom with an adult unless the child's needs, disabilities, or other specified conditions warrant the sharing of bedroom space and the licensee has approved a specific plan to allow the sharing of the bedroom with the adult.

I. No child in care shall share a bed with an adult.

J. A child in care over the age of three years shall not sleep in the same bedroom with children of the opposite gender.

K. Children in care under the age of seven or children in care with significant and documented cognitive or physical disabilities shall not use the top bunk of bunk beds.

L. The bedrooms of children in care shall not be used as passageways and shall have doors for privacy.

M. The home shall be clean, in good repair, and free of hazards to the health and safety of children in care.

N. The grounds around the home shall be safe, properly maintained, free of litter and debris, and present no hazard to the safety of children in care.

O. The provider shall have a written emergency preparedness and response plan developed that addresses:

1. How to shelter in place, when the emergency situation requires for sheltering in place;

2. How to evacuate, if evacuation is necessary;

3. Prompt notification to the licensee of location and contact information when evacuation becomes necessary;

4. Where the provider plans to relocate when the emergency warrants a large scale community evacuation;

5. How the provider plans to maintain the safety and meet the needs of the child at all times during an emergency;

6. Procedures to ensure that the plan is reviewed with each placed child; and

7. Plans to rehearse the plan with each child at least one time every six months.

P. Approved providers and independent living arrangement settings shall arrange for responsible adults to be available to serve in the caretaker's role in case of emergencies. Any substitute caretaker arrangements necessary for a planned or long-term absence of the provider shall require the licensee's prior approval.

Q. All homes shall have at least one operable smoke detector.

R. Possession of any weapons, including firearms, in the home or independent living arrangement shall comply with federal and state laws and local ordinances.

1. Any firearms and other weapons shall be unloaded and stored with the weapon's safety mechanisms activated in a locked closet or cabinet.

2. Ammunition shall be stored in a locked location separate from the weapon.

3. The key or combination to the locked closet and cabinet shall at all times be maintained out of reach of all children in the home.

S. The applicant shall maintain documentation that household pets receive tests, inoculations, and licenses as required by law.

T. The applicant shall ensure that household pets are safe to be around children and that the pets present no health hazard to children in the home.

U. The applicant shall keep cleaning supplies and other toxic substances stored away from food and, as appropriate, out of reach of children and locked.

V. Except for medications that require refrigeration, all medications, prescription and nonprescription, shall be stored separately from food in a locked area out of reach of children. The applicant shall implement safety provisions for the storage of refrigerated medications.

W. The home shall have readily available basic first aid supplies for use in injuries and accidents.

Statutory Authority

§§ 63.2-217 and 63.2-1734 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 28, Issue 10, eff. May 1, 2012.

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