Elk Grove United Methodist Church is an inclusive, intergenerational Christian community committed to social justice, diversity, service, spiritual growth and integrity. Our faith and work reflect God’s unconditional love and Jesus’ teaching to love our neighbors as ourselves. We are called to invite others to walk with us in the Way of Jesus.
We have developed the following guidelines to insure the safety of our youth, children and adults.
1. Safety should be the primary concern at all church events.
2. It is our goal that worship and church activities be safe places for all who attend.
3. All volunteers should complete a volunteer form and be fingerprinted before leading an event.
4. All church staff shall be fingerprinted.
5. It is expected that registered sex offenders will identify themselves to the Pastor or a lay leader.
6. The Church will review the Megan’s Law Database routinely.
7. Any type of sexual harassment is not tolerated.
8. When driving on a church activity, drivers should minimize distractions such as cell phone usage, eating, smoking, etc.
9. There are incident report forms available in the front office and Bartholomew Hall kitchen. Please use as appropriate.
REGISTERED SEX OFFENDERS
1. Each registered sex offender will have limitations placed on their participation in church activities. The limitations will be designed to allow maximum participation in church events consistent with protecting our church family. The limitations may apply both for activities where minors are present as well as general church activities.
2. A meeting with the registered offender, the Pastor and Lay Leader will be held to review the limitations and requirements. A written agreement signed by all parties will detail the limitations/requirements and the consequences for failure to comply.
3. The Pastor and lay leaders are responsible to inform a new pastor of known sex offenders in the congregation, and of the limitations that have been imposed.
It is our goal to provide a nurturing opportunity for spiritual education for all ages outside regular worship services. We focus on traditional Bible stories as well as how to be a Christian in everyday life.
1. All children and youth should be in assigned Sunday School rooms from 9:45 – 10:45. Any children/youth not in Sunday School will be taken to the appropriate room or returned to their parents.
2. Children should not use the playground equipment without appropriate supervision.
3. All adult teachers and regularly scheduled substitutes shall be finger printed and have their back ground checked. The results of back ground checks are confidential and will be kept under lock and key by the pastor.
4. Child care providers must be approved by the pastor and the Child Care Director. Substitute child care providers will be scheduled when the Child Care Director is unavailable.
ACOLYTES, YOUTH FELLOWSHIP
It is our goal that Youth Leaders and parent volunteers are Christian role models sharing their faith and simply being there to talk our youth, answer questions and encourage their growth. The goal is to have all youth know they are loved, gifted, forgiven and empowered and that our church is here to serve them, care for them, help them grow in their faith and have fun!
1. All adult volunteers should be fingerprinted.
2. There should always be two adults (21 or older) at all activities and meetings. In the case of youth aged 12-18, it is permissible for an adult to take 2 youth grocery shopping or some other type of preparation for an event. With children there should always be two adults. If you find yourself in a situation with just one child or youth, remedy the situation as quickly as possible and let another counselor know what happened.
3. An Adult should not be alone with a youth/child in a room with the door closed. If a child/youth wants to have a private conversation it should be done in public (such as sitting in the middle of the pews in the sanctuary, sitting at a table in the Bartholomew Hall or at a picnic bench outside).
4. Physical safety is the primary concern at events. The 2 questions to always ask are: “Is what we are doing together safe? Can someone get hurt?”
5. At swimming functions, where youth and children are present, one adult should be assigned to watch the pool at all times. If an adult is not available to do so, the pool should be “closed” until an adult is available to do so. At functions with over 15 people swimming, a lifeguard must be on duty – the church will hire a lifeguard.
6. The youth room door is to remain open unless there are at least 3 people, one of whom is an adult.
7. During second service, youth who have attended first service may hang out in the youth room provided an adult is available.
8. All drivers must comply with the conference regulations, which currently require drivers to be 23 years of age or older with a driving form on file and at least 3 years of driving experience.
9. Other Driving related concerns:
10. When at events, the normal guideline is for Senior High Youth to be in groups of 3 or more. Junior High Youth and Acolytes need to be in groups of 3 or more with at least one adult. This guideline is occasionally adjusted to the specific situation.
11. Medical Forms and Permission slips should be on file for all youth and children participating in our groups. When leaving the church for an event, the forms should be taken with the counselors—1 complete set for each car.
12. Any suspicion or signs of abuse should be reported immediately (the same day) to the Pastor. If he/she is not available report your concerns to a Lay Leader.
13. Any accidents or serious concerns about youth or children should be shared with the Pastor or chair of the Trustees committee as soon as possible.
14. The use of, or being under the influence of, alcohol or illegal drugs is not permitted when working with children or youth.