The Holy Synod of Bishops of The Orthodox Church in America, on April 2, 2003, have adopted the Policies, Standards, and Procedures Guidlines on Sexual Misconduct for all parishes and institutions of The OCA to follow and abide by. We, here at St. Geoerge Orthodox Catholic Church, have adopted them and follow them in every aspect of the life of our parish for the protection our children and our parishioners. If anyone has any questions or concerns, please contact our parish priest, Rev. Jason Vansuch at (716) 875-4222 and he will be able to help you.
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Any and all Sexual Misconduct Will Be Reported to Police Immediately!
General Policy on Sexual Misconduct
The Church laments the sin of sexual misconduct, and will not tolerate it by its clergy or any layperson. The Church should educate clergy, laypersons, and the Church community about prevention of sexual misconduct. It will utilize advance screening and review procedures to reduce the risk of sexual misconduct, and to maintain a safe environment for minors. It will implement procedures to fairly deal with and resolve allegations of sexual misconduct.
Guiding Principles on Allegations of Sexual Misconduct
The Church will take all allegations of sexual misconduct seriously, and will promptly respond to all allegations. It will report allegations in accordance with the civil laws of any jurisdiction where an act of sexual misconduct is alleged to have occurred, and will cooperate in accordance with civil and canon law in any investigation by civil authorities. The Church will reach out to the victims of sexual misconduct and their families to provide for their spiritual well-being and healing
General Supervision and Two-Adult Policy
(a) Whenever possible, youth involved in Church ministries or programs should not be left in the care of or under the supervision of one adult. Two or more adults should be present, except for necessary brief absences, during any Church activity involving children. All overnight activities involving youth shall be supervised or chaperoned by at least two (2) adults, and if youth participants are both male and female, then supervisors or chaperones must be male and female.
(b) Except for emergencies, in any circumstances where a one-on-one interaction with youth is required in connection with a Church ministry or program, the adult to be involved shall first notify another adult of the circumstances, and shall identify the youth and the place and approximate time of the expected interaction. This way, another adult will be present in the same location that this interaction is to take place.
(c) Adequate supervision of youth shall be maintained at all times in connection with parish ministries or programs that involve youth until such time as they are in the custody of a responsible adult. The requirement for custodial return shall not apply to any youth of sufficient age to have a driver’s license, or to any youth with respect to which a parent or guardian has consented in writing to other arrangements.
Permission and Release Forms
Prior written permission from a parent or guardian must be obtained for any youth to participate in any youth event or activity sponsored by a parish whether on the parish premises or away from parish premises.
(a) Our parish shall not , without the written permission of the Rector, sponsor or participate in any closed activity or event involving youth. Clergy, parents, staff, and members of the parish shall have the right, at any time, to observe any youth activity or event, and are encouraged to do so.
(b) Doors on any rooms in our parish where parish-sponsored youth activities or events are held shall be left at least partially open unless the doors have reasonably sized glass windows.
(a) Any inappropriate conduct or relationships between an adult and a child or member of a youth group shall be confronted immediately and investigated. Prompt warnings shall be issued by supervisory personnel when appropriate, and the situation closely monitored.
(b) Volunteers shall be prohibited from further work with youth for repeated violations of such warnings, unless a single violation is of sufficient gravity to warrant immediate action. Employees engaged in such conduct or relationships shall be subject to similar action as determined by the Rector.
Our parish has a policy on transportation of youth to parish-sponsored youth activities or events away from parish premises. We (1) require the use of drivers who are reasonably older than the youth they are transporting, and who do not have adverse driving records, (2) prohibit the driver from being alone in a vehicle with one youth unless the driver has the advance approval of the parent, the Rector and a youth ministry supervisor, and (3) the parish and each driver maintains liability insurance with limits to satisfactorily protect the parish and any other sponsoring organization from liability.
Our children are our future and we protect them and watch them at all the times.
All innappropriate conduct will be reported immediately!