Zero Tolerance Policy
Options for Life recognizes the importance of transparency and accountability to the community it serves. As required in Article I, Section 17 of Options for Life’s master contract with the State of California, Options for Life is committed to reporting information with accuracy and transparency and maintaining full compliance with the laws, rules and regulations that govern Options for Life’s business. This includes annually notifying all its employees, its vendors and licensees of long- term health care facilities* that are serving Options for Life consumers that Options for Life has Zero Tolerance Policy regarding consumer abuse and neglect.
Consumer abuse committed by Options for Life employees, or employees of Options for life vendors, or employees of licensees who operate long-term health care facilities will not be tolerated. All such abuse or allegations of such abuse will be thoroughly investigated. Any Options for Life employee found to have engaged in abuse against a consumer will be subject to severe discipline, up to and including discharge. Any abuse found to have been committed by employees of Options for Life vendors, or employees of licensee’s who operate long-term health care facilities, will be referred to the appropriate authorities and the vendor may also be subject to sanctions up to and including, removal from the list of those authorized to provide services for regional center consumers.
All Options for Life employees who are mandated reporters pursuant to the California Penal Code all employees of Options for Life vendors and employees of Licensees who operate long-term health care facilities who are mandated reporters shall strictly comply with the reporting laws at all times, including, but not limited to, Welfare and Institutions code Section 15630. A mandated reporter must (unless exempt under law) report all consumer abuse to the applicable governmental authorities immediately or as soon as practicable after his or her discovery or reasonable belief that consumer abuse has occurred.
Options for life and all Options for Life vendors and licensees who operate long-term health care facilities serving Options for Life consumers shall ensure their employees are fully informed upon hire and annually thereafter regarding Options for Life’s Zero Tolerance Policy Regarding Consumer Abuse and Neglect and mandatory abuse and neglect reporting laws. Each employee must be knowledgeable of their responsibility to protect consumers for abuse and neglect, the signs of abuse and neglect the process for reporting suspected abuse or neglect, and the consequences of failing to follow the law and enforcing this policy.
Options for Life’s Zero Tolerance Policy Regarding Consumer Abuse and Neglect will be incorporated into any new or revised contract, vendorization or other agreement for consumer services.
If Options for Life, or Options for Life vendor, or licensees who operates a long-term health care facility becomes aware of consumer abuse, it shall take immediate action, to the extent permitted by law, to ensure the health and safety of the affected consumer and all other consumers receiving services and supports from Options for Life. This obligation is in addition to those obligations required of mandated reporters to report consumer abuse under the reporting laws.
- Consumers are in safe settings.
- Service coordinators inform families of their rights and the services and supports available to them.
- Options for Life aspires to the highest standards of ethical conduct: doing what we say; reporting information with accuracy and transparency; and maintaining full compliance with the laws, rules and regulations that govern Options for Life’s business.
- The Options for Life board of Directors will possess the highest personal and professional ethics, integrity and values, and be committed to representing the long-term interests of the community it serves.
*According to the State of California Health and Safety Code Section 1418,
(a) “Long-term health care facility” means any facility licensed pursuant to chapter 2 (commencing with section 1250) that is any of the following:
(1) Skilled nursing facility.
(2) Intermediate care facility.
(3) Intermediate care facility/ developmentally disabled.
(4) Intermediate care facility/ developmentally disabled habilitative.
(5) Intermediate care facility/ developmentally disabled-nursing.
(6) Congregate living health facility.
(7) Nursing facility.
(8) Intermediate care facility/ developmentally disabled-continuous nursing.
(b) “Long-term health care facility” also includes a pediatric day health and respite care facility licensed pursuant to Chapter 8.6 (commencing with Section 1760)
(c) “Long-term health care facility” does not include a general acute care hospital or an acute psychiatric hospital, except for that distinct part of the hospital that provides skilled nursing facility, intermediate care facility, or pediatric day health and respite care facility services.
(d) “Licensees” means the holder of a license issued under Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 1250) or Chapter 8.6 (commencing with Section 1760) for a long-term health care facility.
NEW POLICY DEVELOPMENT DATE: JULY 15, 2013
DATE APPROVED BY BOARD: SEPTEMBER 5, 2013
DATE OF NEXT REVIEW: ON OR BEFORE SEPTEMBER 5, 2015
Options for Life (the company) is required by Regional Centers to implement the Zero Tolerance Policy for Consumer Abuse or Neglect. Pursuant to welfare and Institutions Code (WIC) Section 15630-15632, all employees serving consumers are mandated reporters and required to report abuse and or neglect to the appropriate governmental authority immediately or as soon as practically possible. Due to the sensitivity of this matter, employees are encouraged to consult with the Executive Director- Karol Scotta at 310.880.0382 or Operational Director- Tiara Dancy at 310.421.6334 to properly make the report.
Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting
Section 11166 of the Penal Code * requires any child care custodian, medical practitioner, non-medical practitioner, or employee of a child protective agency who has knowledge of or observes a child in his or her professional capacity or within the scope of his or her employment whom he or she knows or reasonably suspects has been the victim of a child abuse to report the known or suspected instance by:
- 1. Contacting by phone any local law enforcement agency; OR County Probation Department, OR County Welfare Department immediately or as soon as practically possible
- 2. Sending a written follow up report using the Form SS 8572 within 36 hours of receiving the information concerning the incident. The form can be found at:
Elder and Adult Abuse Reporting
WIC sections 15600-15675 known as the Elderly and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act* states (amongst other things) that any person who has assumed responsibility for the care or the custody of an adult consumer, including administrators, supervisors, and any licensed staff of a facility that provides care of services to adult consumers, are mandated reporters.
Under the law, any mandated reporter who experiences any of the following shall report the abuse to the applicable governmental authorities: a) Has observed or has knowledge of an incident that reasonably appears to physical abuse, abandonment, abduction, isolation, financial, or neglect of an adult consumer. b) Is told by an adult consumer that he or she experienced abuse and or c) Reasonably suspects that existence of adult abuse
The reporter should submit either:
- 1. A confidential internet report to
- 2. A telephonic and written report to 877-477-3646. The reporting must be done within 24 hours of suspecting child or elder abuse followed by a written report within 36 hours. The staff has to send the report by mail or via internet within two working days after the telephonic report. The form for the written report can be found on