S.B. NO.



















     SECTION 1.  The purpose of this Act is to amend Act 130, Session Laws of Hawaii 2022, clarifying access to services, adding a description of homeless youth, and expanding the ages that may be served.

     SECTION 2.  Act 130, Session Laws of Hawaii 2022, is amended by amending section 2 to read as follows:

     "SECTION 2.  (a)  There is established within the department of human services [for administrative purposes only a] office of youth services the safe spaces for youth pilot program, which shall be an inter-agency initiative to provide safe spaces in each county for youth experiencing homelessness.

     (b)  [The program shall collaborate with all] All departments of the State and its political subdivisions that offer services [for the purpose of ensuring] to ensure the well-being of youth in Hawaii, including the department of education, department of health, department of human services, department of public safety, and county police departments, shall collaborate to [coordinate the identification of] identify youth who are experiencing homelessness and coordinate placement of these youth at a shelter for homeless youth.

     (c)  The department of human services shall enter into contracts with nonprofit organizations to provide [shelters] shelter, assessment, and access to available services for [homeless] youth[.] experiencing homelessness or who are at risk of homelessness.  Any nonprofit organization contracted under this subsection shall have the knowledge, experience, and qualifications, including licenses, necessary to operate a shelter for homeless youth.

     (d)  Notwithstanding any other law to the contrary, a shelter for homeless youth contracted under subsection (c) may admit a youth into the shelter's care for up to ninety days without the consent of the youth's parent or guardian.

     (e)  The department of human services shall submit a report of its findings and recommendations pertaining to the safe spaces for youth pilot program to the legislature no later than thirty days prior to the convening of the regular session of 2025.  The report shall include:

     (1)  A record of pilot program activities and accomplishments;

     (2)  A recommendation on whether to extend the program; and

     (3)  Any proposed legislation.

     (f)  The department of human services [shall] may adopt rules pursuant to chapter 91, Hawaii Revised Statutes, necessary to carry out the purposes of this Act.

     (g)  For the purposes of this Act:

     "Shelter for homeless youth" means a facility that operates to receive youth twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, and provide youth with services, [including:] that may include:

     (1)  Overnight lodging and supervision;

     (2)  Hot meals and hot showers;

     (3)  Access to medical and behavioral health services; and

     (4)  Education and employment support[.];

provided that facilities shall also take steps to ensure that youth who are or should be under the legal jurisdiction of the juvenile justice or child welfare systems obtain and receive services from those systems until such time as they are released from the jurisdiction of those systems as required by the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act as amended, 42 U.S.C. 5701, et seq."

     "Youth" means an individual [who is at least fourteen years of age but] under twenty-five years of age."

     "Youth at risk of homelessness," or "youth experiencing homelessness," or "homeless youth" means:

     (1)  Youth who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, or camping grounds due to the lack of adequate alternative accommodations; or are abandoned in hospitals; or other health care or behavioral health care settings;

     (2)  Youth who have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings; or

     (3)  Youth who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings."

     SECTION 3.  There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $4,496,870 or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal years 2023-2024 and the same sum of $4,496,870 or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2024-2025 to fund and operate the safe spaces for youth pilot program, including funding for two full-time equivalent (2.0 FTE) positions and administrative costs for the pilot program.

     The sums appropriated shall be expended by the department of human services for the purposes of this Act.

     SECTION 4.  Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken.  New statutory material is underscored.

     SECTION 5.  This Act shall take effect upon its approval.









Report Title:

Department of Human Services; Office of Youth Services; Youth Shelter; Homelessness; Appropriation



Amends Act 130, Session Laws of Hawaii 2022, clarifies access to services, provides a definition of homeless youth; expands the age of youth that may be served; establishes two full-time equivalent positions; and makes an appropriation.




The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.