Child and Youth Protection Policy
Jesus said, “Whoever welcomes (a) child … welcomes me” (Matthew 18:5). Children are our present and our future, our hope, our teachers, our inspiration. They are full participants in the life of the church and in the realm of God. Jesus also said, “If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones … it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matthew 18:6).
At Asbury United Methodist Church, our children and youth are very important to us. Asbury has a Child and Youth Protection Policy to implement safety measures to demonstrate our absolute and unwavering commitment to the physical safety of all of our children and youth. We conduct background checks on all volunteers, 18 years and older, working with youth and children, this includes but is not limited to Sunday School teachers, Vacation Bible School and Pit Stop volunteers.
2 Person/Open Door Rule:
- It is our goal that at least two (2) unrelated individuals 18 and older or at least 1 individual 18 and older with a supervised minor at least 14 years of age are required at all child and youth church sponsored activities. Activities are to be conducted in areas that minimize opportunity for secrecy and isolation.
- In the event that only one (1) individual 18 and older is present there should be no fewer than two (2) children or youth with the individual. In this instance, doors without windows to the classroom must remain open and any windows must have clear view into the classroom.
- If only one (1) individual 18 and older and one (1) child or youth are present, then immediately contact the Children’s Ministry Director or ministry leader to resolve any one-on-one situations.
Privacy and Social Media: Regarding the use of child and youth photographic images, refer to the Asbury United Methodist Church Media Use Policy.
If you personally witness or have reason to believe a situation occurred, you are legally obligated to report the alleged incident. Follow all 4 of the following steps:
- Call 911,
- Then, call the Child Protective Services Hotline at 1-800-800-5556,
- Then, inform the Pastor at 1-812-372-4555, who will determine next steps and required documentation. If there is an event leader, work with the Pastor to ensure he/she is informed.
- Then, complete and submit an Incident Report.
Important Note: If another person has reported a second-hand concern to you, direct the individual to this policy and urge the individual to adhere to it. Do NOT report second-hand information yourself.
For more information, view our Child and Youth Protection Policy. If you need to fill out the background check form, be trained or have questions about the policy, contact the church office at 812-372-4555 or firstname.lastname@example.org.