Wednesday, June 11, 2008
George Directs Domestic Violence Group to Implement Report
By a MetNews Staff Writer
California Chief Justice Ronald M. George yesterday announced that he has officially charged the Judicial Council’s Domestic Violence Practice and Procedure Task Force with implementing the comprehensive guidelines and practices in the task force’s final report.
The 18-member task force was asked in 2005 to make recommendations to improve the practice, procedure, and administration of cases involving domestic violence allegations in California, and it proposed 139 new guidelines and practices designed to improve the way state trial courts handle these cases in a report that was unanimously adopted by the council in February.
George announced that retired First District Court of Appeal Presiding Justice Laurence Donald Kay will continue to chair the task force, and that terms of the members—which were set to expire on June 30—have been extended by two years until 2010.
He also appointed two new members to the task force: Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Steven R. Van Sicklen—who on Monday announced that he would step down from his post as supervising judge of the criminal courts—and Ventura Superior Court Presiding Judge Colleen Toy White.
In addition to the personnel announcements, George also announced an expansion in the task force’s charge to include:
•Implementing the guidelines and practices in the Final Report of the Domestic Violence Practice and Procedure Task Force accepted by the Judicial Council on February 22, 2008;
•Selecting and referring guidelines and practices, as appropriate, to Judicial Council internal committees, advisory committees, AOC divisions, or other entities for implementation, including preparation of suggested legislation, rules, forms, or educational materials to be considered through the normal judicial branch process;
•Collaborating with the Governing Committee for the Center for Judicial Education and Research (CJER) to propose revision of the rules relating to minimum judicial educational requirements to address issues of domestic violence;
•Studying the need for additional resources that local courts may require to implement the proposed guidelines and practices; and
•Reporting progress to the Judicial Council by June 2009.
Copyright 2008, Metropolitan News Company