(a) No person other than the parent, guardian, or relative within the third degree, and no firm, corporation, association, or agency, other than a licensed child-placing agency, may place or arrange or assist in placing or arranging for the placement of a child under 16 years of age in a family home or for adoption. In accordance with the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder, any licensed child-placing agency may accept children for placement in family homes and shall have and maintain care, custody, and control of any such child until returned to the person from whom received or until responsibility for the child is transferred to another child welfare agency or terminated by the order of a court of competent jurisdiction.
(b) Every such agency shall keep and maintain careful supervision of all children under its care, including those placed in family homes, and its officers or agents shall visit all such homes and families as often as may be necessary to promote the welfare of such child; provided, that legally adopted children shall not be subject to such supervision and visitation, or other supervision or visitation. Every such agency shall keep such records as shall be required by the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder and all records regarding children and all facts learned about children and their parents or relatives shall be deemed confidential.
(c) Records which are deemed confidential shall not be available for inspection by nor disclosed to any person, firm, corporation, association, or public agency, except that such records shall be available for inspection by authorities authorized by law to license child-placing agencies. Such records shall not be subject to judicial subpoena in collateral proceedings, except that the licensed child-placing agency and the Mayor in accordance with rules and regulations promulgated hereunder, may make such records, or any information contained in such records, available:
(1) When the Mayor or such agency determines that any information contained in such records shall promote or protect the interest and welfare of any child the Mayor or such agency has served; and
(2) For the purpose of research if adequate safeguards are taken against the disclosure or publication in any manner of the identity of any person contained in such records.
(Apr. 22, 1944, 58 Stat. 194, ch. 174, § 5; June 8, 1954, 68 Stat. 247, ch. 273, § 3; Apr. 23, 1980, D.C. Law 3-59, § 2(a), 27 DCR 983.)
1981 Ed., § 32-1005.
1973 Ed., § 32-785.
Legislative History of Laws
For legislative history of D.C. Law 3-59, see Historical and Statutory Notes following § 4-1402.