900.12 Environmental standards.

    (a) The facility must be maintained in a good state of repair and sanitation and in conformance with applicable State and local laws, regulations and ordinances in order to assure a safe, comfortable environment for residents.

        (1) All areas of the facility, including exits which are accessible to residents, must be well-lighted.

        (2) All lavatories, sleeping areas, recreational areas, hallways, and other living areas must be kept clean, sanitary, and free of insects, rodents and trash. Procedures must be established and implemented for the cleaning and maintenance of the entire facility.

        (3) All garbage and refuse containers must be securely covered and emptied on a regular daily basis.

    (b) Bathrooms.

        (1) There must be a minimum of one tub or shower for every 15 individual residents and one sink and one toilet for every 10 residents. In tier I and tier II facilities separate bathrooms must be provided for males and females in ratios appropriate to the percentage of males and females in the facility census and the number of young male children in families without older male members.

        (2) Tier I and tier II facilities must provide adequate space and equipment, such as bathtubs, portable tubs and basins, for the bathing and changing of infants and young children.

        (3) Facilities must assure that bathing and toilet facilities are accessible and in working order with hot and cold water 24 hours a day.

        (4) Curtains, dividers, partitions, private stalls, or other similar devices must be utilized to afford residents privacy when using toilets, showers and tubs. Private areas for changing clothes must be provided adjacent to tubs and showers.

        (5) Bathrooms must be cleaned a minimum of twice daily and more often if necessary. (6) Hot water for bathing and washing must be maintained at a maximum temperature of 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

    (c) Sleeping areas.

        (1) Tier I facilities.

            (i) Each family must have an individual identified sleeping area providing at least 50 square feet of space per family member.

            (ii) Any room or other enclosed space divided into individual family sleeping areas may sleep no more than a total of 50 persons. (iii) Separate private areas for each sex must be provided for changing clothes.

        (2) Tier II facilities. Each resident family must have an individual room with a door containing a working door lock and with the minimum square footage per family member as required by the applicable State or local code.

        (3) Congregate shelters for homeless pregnant women.

            (i) Each individual identified sleeping area in a congregate shelter for homeless pregnant women must provide at least 50 square feet of space per resident, excluding closet space. Curtains, dividers or partitions must be placed between beds if two or more beds are placed in a single sleeping area.

            (ii) Any room used as a sleeping area may sleep no more than a total of 10 persons.

    (d) Dining and recreation areas.

        (1) In family shelters, recreation or leisure areas must be provided which are separate from sleeping areas and which have sufficient space and furnishings to serve the needs of the residents.

        (2) In facilities serving meals onsite, dining areas must be provided which are separate from sleeping areas and which have sufficient space and furnishings to serve the needs of the residents.

    (e) Furnishings and equipment.

        (1) The facility must provide furnishings and equipment, including toys, which do not endanger resident health, safety and welfare and which support daily activities.

        (2) All furnishings and equipment must be durable, clean and appropriate to function. (3) The facility must furnish each resident, whether an adult or child, with a clean bed (or cribs for infants) a minimum of 27 inches in width, solidly constructed, and in good repair which has:

            (i) a clean, comfortable and well-constructed mattress, standard in size for the bed; and

            (ii) a clean and comfortable pillow of standard size.

        (4) Each resident must be supplied with:

            (i) sheets;

            (ii) a pillowcase;

            (iii) one or more blankets depending on the season;

            (iv) towels;

            (v) soap;

            (vi) toilet tissue; and

            (vii) disposable diapers for infants in tier I facilities. In tier II facilities, diapers must be supplied to families which request them in emergency circumstances including, but not limited to, circumstances where a family has no funds to purchase them.

        (5) Bed linens, blankets and towels must be:

            (i) clean and washable;

            (ii) free from rips and tears; and

            (iii) available when changes are necessary.

        (6) A complete set of bed linens and towels must be provided to each resident at entry as needed thereafter. Residents may, however, be required by theperator to launder and change linens and towels regularly.

        (7) Each family must be supplied with at least one bureau or chest of drawers. In congregate shelters for homeless pregnant women, the bureau or chest of drawers must be able to be secured by the resident.

        (8) All operable windows must be equipped with screens and locks, and in facilities where children reside all operable windows must have window guards in place. All windows in sleeping areas must have shades or other appropriate window covering to ensure privacy.

        (9) Light fixtures must be shaded to prevent glare. All electrical outlets accessible to children must be adequately protected.

        (10) Dining areas must be furnished with dining tables and chairs appropriate to the size and function of the facility.

        (11) Living rooms, sitting rooms, lounges and recreation areas must be furnished with tables, chairs, lighting fixtures and other equipment appropriate to the size and function of the specific area and of the facility.

        (12) A minimum of one washing machine and dryer must be provided for resident use. Such laundry facilities must be located in a clean, dry, well-lighted area.

        (13) The facility must maintain areas suitable for posting required notices documents and other written materials in locations visible and accessible to residents, staff and visitors.

        (14) Heating systems must be maintained in good working order.

        (15) In tier I facilities, each family must be provided with a locker or other similar secured container. The family must have access to such locker or secured container.

        (16) An adequate number of pay telephones must be available for resident use.

    (f) Safety procedures.

        (1) Chain locks, hasps, bars, padlocks and similar devices must not be used in any communal area in a way that would inhibit access to an exit or the free movement of residents.

        (2) Doors in residents' rooms in tier II facilities must be able to be secured by the resident, provided such doors can be unlocked from the outside and the inside and keys are carried by supervisory and security staff at all times.

        (3) Residents must not have access to storage areas used for cleaning agents, bleaches, insecticides, or any other poisonous, dangerous, or flammable material unless necessary for work they are performing.

        (4) Hallways and corridors must not be used for storage of equipment or trash.

    (g) Kitchens, sanitation and sanitary procedures.

        (1) All kitchens or food service and preparation areas must be well-lighted and ventilated, and provided with essential and proper equipment, adequate for the number of residents to be served, for storage, refrigeration, freezing, preparation and serving of food.

        (2) Food service areas must be provided with sufficient and suitable space and equipment to maintain efficient and sanitary operation of all required functions, in compliance with the New York State Sanitary Code, 10 NYCRR Part 14 as promulgated by the New York State Department of Health. All other State, county and local health and fire department regulations relating to kitchen operations for fire protection, safety, sanitation and health must also be complied with.

Return to DSS Regs Table of Contents| Search DSS Regs