February DVP Requirements Corner

Do you ever have a question regarding what is required by DVP?  Every month DVP features common questions we received from funded programs and our response.

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Question: A client in our shelter was trying to move to another city in Colorado and was calling other shelters looking for space. The advocate at the other shelter was requiring the client to sign a release of information with our organization so that we could talk about the client with the staff at the other shelter prior to admitting them. Is this allowed? 

Answer: No, this practice is not allowed. Per DVP Rule 12.202.3 B.3, funded programs must provide free, voluntary services without condition or prerequisites to any person who is eligible. This means that advocates with a shelter program need to evaluate eligibility based on their own assessment of the information provided directly by the survivor and may not require the survivor to sign a release of information to speak with another program's advocate about services received by, or experiences with, the client. This would be considered a condition or prerequisite and does not align with DVP rules or federal requirements. 
 
If you are an advocate who is receiving calls from other programs requesting this type of pre-admission conversation, please decline to share any client information, inform them of the requirements, and talk with your supervisor to determine the best way for your program to assist the other shelter in meeting federal and state requirements for serving the survivor.