Q: Is a living room considered a sleeping area for purposes of Supervised Independent Living Placement (SILP) approval? The Non-Minor Dependent (NMD) wishes to reside with a relative and sleep on a couch while she saves money to get her own place. She has completed the SILP readiness assessment and is knowledgeable about living on her own. She would pay a minimal amount of rent which would allow her to save quickly.
A: There is nothing explicitly prohibiting a living room from being approved as a SILP, as long as it meets all of the health and safety standards outlined on the SOC 157B, the form that is used by county child welfare workers to conduct health and safety inspections for the SILP. The SOC 157B explicitly prohibits the bathroom or kitchen from serving as a sleeping area.
All County Letter 11-77 states, “Counties have significant discretion for what can constitute a SILP placement.” It also states, “Living situations for young adults will likely reflect the economic realities of the area in which they reside.” The ACL also states, “NMDs may be willing to share a smaller living space with two other people in order to live with a permanent connection that they are comfortable with, rather than renting a room with more space from a landlord they do not know.”
With no explicit prohibition, these statements suggest that such an arrangement would be allowable. This was confirmed by CDSS. Hopefully, however, such an arrangement would be temporary, as in the circumstance you describe. As with all placement decisions, the individual needs and preferences of the youth should be considered.