INSTRUCTIONS ON OBTAINING PENNSYLVANIA CRIMINAL BACKGROUND AND CHILD ABUSE CLEARANCES/TRAINING
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia now requires that anyone working within the parish have a Criminal Background Check as well as a Child Abuse Clearance Check on file in the Rectory and with the Archdiocese. This would
include all volunteers, including parish employees, lectors, cantors, Eucharistic Ministers, sacristans, ushers, Parish Council, Financial Council, PREP teachers/aids, CYO board members and coaches and all other parish volunteers. Those of us who have regular contact with children will be required to attend training sessions which are outlined below and in the attached form. We are requesting that everyone please take the first step in obtaining their background/child abuse clearance checks. The process is quite simple. You will need to do the PA Criminal Background Check first which you can do online or hard copy. The online option gives you results immediately which you can print and save. The Child Abuse Clearances can only be done through the mail and a copy of your PA Criminal Background check results must be included. Below is the link to the website for the Child Abuse Clearance information which also includes the PA Background Check links. If you do the on-line option, please remember to print your results to be submitted with the Child Abuse Clearance form (there is a checkbox on this form to attach the report). After completion, please remember to send copies to the Rectory c/o Theresa Myers so they can be updated in our database. You will not need to complete this again for five years. Anyone who had their clearances done prior to 2009 will need to do them again.
IMPORTANT ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
Below is a list of the requirements:
• All paid staff require clearances (stipend, contract, or W-2 employees, anyone compensated for their work).
• Volunteers (not paid) with any possible contact require at minimum of the clearances above. (This would include carnival volunteers, lectors, cantors, Eucharistic Ministers, sacristans, ushers, Parish Council and Finance Council).
• All paid staff and volunteers (not paid) with regular contact with children require clearances and training. (This would include our parish priests, PREP teachers/aids, CYO board members and coaches).
• Training consists of two sessions: 1 in person (Safe Environment Part 1 – “Protecting God’s Children”) and 1 online (Safe Environment Part 2 – “Mandatory Reporting of Suspected Child Abuse”). Thesessions are not available in reverse form, meaning the online is only online, and in person is only in person. These trainings do not expire and therefore only need to be completed once.
• Please note: For anyone who completed Safe Environment Part 1 prior to July 2011, the signed acknowledgment of the Technology Addendum must completed. For anyone who trained after July 2011 it is already included.
You can find the exact policy on the Safe Environment requirements at www.childyouthprotection.org, and in the attached two-page summary of these policies. If, after you have read this information, you are unsure of whether you need additional training, please contact Theresa Myers at 610.809.9691 or Father Mulranen at the Rectory. The link where these trainings can be found is: http://childyouthprotection.org/index.php/staff-volunteers/required-training. You will need to register for an account under the training module and then you can begin. Please print or copy any certificates of completion to be sent to the Rectory for your file.
On behalf of Father Mulranen, Father Gillin and Father Kelly, we thank you for dedication and commitment to Our Lady of Fatima Parish. If you have any questions regarding this process, please call Theresa Myers at 610-809.9691.
FROM THE OFFICE FOR CHILD AND YOUTH PROTECTION
VICTIM ASSISTANCE • SAFE ENVIRONMENT
(888) 800-8780 • (215) 587-2466 • Fax (215) 587-3711
ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA
All parish and school employees regardless of level of contact with children and youth, and volunteers who have any possible contact with children and youth must complete the following background checks and training requirements:
Required Background Checks Prior to Service:
PA State Police Criminal Record Check
• Can be obtained online with results available within a few minutes.
• Renewal required every 5 years
PA Department of Public Welfare Child Abuse Clearance Check
• Volunteers must attach a copy of the results of their PA State Police Criminal Check to Child Abuse Clearance form.
• Renewal required every 5 years
Federal Criminal Background Check:
• As of April, 2007, the state of PA requires all new school employees hired after April 2007 to have a Federal background check. Information is available on Cogent website: www.pa.cogentid.com
• A Federal background check is also required for non-school employees and all volunteers, who do not live in PA or have lived outside of PA during the past two years.
• Renewal is required every 5 years for employees and volunteers who reside outside of PA
Omnibus School Act- arrest/conviction report form
• All current employees were required to submit the form by December 27, 2011
• All current volunteers were required to sign and submit by March 1, 2012
• Any employee or volunteer who is arrested must submit form within 72 hours of arrest or conviction for an enumerated offense and occurring after 9/28/2011
For all employees and volunteers who have regular contact with children (at least one time per week) the following trainings are required:
Safe Environment: Protecting God’s Children
• Attendance is expected within 90 days of beginning to work with children.
Review of the Technology Addendum
• Those who attended Safe Environment/Protecting God’s Children Training before 7/1/2011
(This review is included in Safe Environment trainings after 7/1/2011)
Mandated Reporting of Suspected Child Abuse
• Employees and volunteers, who did not complete in-person can do so now online at:
A link to the forms for the background checks and the list of trainings is available on the Office for Child
and Youth Protection webpage: www.childyouthprotection.org
COMPLIANCE GUIDELINES AND RESOURCES
No employee or volunteer should begin work with children without the PA State Police Criminal Record Check. Employees must secure all other required background checks within 30 days of hire. During this provisional period, their work with children must be supervised. If the federal criminal history background check is delayed while being processed, the employee, from the date of hire, must provide proof that he/she has completed the process to secure the federal background check. Volunteers should have all of the required background checks as they begin to work with children. If they do not, the Pastor may permit a volunteer to work with children during a provisional period if they can showproof that background check requests have been submitted. Their work with children must be supervised during this period. All background checks must be received within 30 days. Those who do not comply must be moved to “inactive status” until all requirements have been completed. Please contact the Office for Child and Youth Protection at 215-587-2466 if you have any questions about these requirements.