Adopted 6/18/15

POLICY: SAFE CHURCH                                                  


Applies to:  All individuals while on church property and to all individuals while participating in any Church sponsored activity/program, whether on or off-site, without exception.   


Introduction:

The members of the First Congregational Church of Georgetown believe in following Jesus’ example of respect for the integrity and dignity of all people.  In the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus taught us to love God with heart and soul, with strength and mind, and our neighbors as ourselves. (Luke 10:27)  To live by this teaching is to pursue love, safety, peace, and security for all who come within the reaches of our ministries. This policy calls upon us all to share in the safekeeping and protection of everyone who uses our Church property and the physical care of our Church structures.



Administration:

A) The Property Team is responsible for oversight of the care, custody and protection of our congregation's physical property and all individuals who use it;

B) The Property Team will designate a Safety Officer and an assistant Safety Officer;

C) The Safety Officer shall:

     1) Ensure that CORI screening is completed for the assistant Safety Officer, the Pastor, all employees, Church school teachers, Youth Group leaders, Choir Directors and any other person working with children under the age of 18 and that each person has been determined to be suitable to serve;

     2) Ensure that Our Congregation's leadership receives, and provides others with, appropriate training on all Safe Church matters;

     3) Oversee key distribution and return;

     4) Maintain a Building Evacuation Plan(s) and ensure that it is updated as needed;

     5) Review this policy and the Safety Officer's Duties, Procedures & Requirements at least annually and suggest revisions to the Council as needed

D) The assistant Safety Officer shall:

     1) Ensure that the Safety Officer has completed a CORI screening and been determined to be suitable to serve;

     2) Act as substitute whenever the Safety Officer is absent;

E) Other than clergy, any Church school teacher must be a member for at least 6 months or a regular Sunday worship service attendee for at least one year;  Church school assistants and occasional adult chaperones do not need to establish themselves as fit to serve;

F) Assistants must be at least 14 years old AND at least five years older than the oldest minor child in the class or group;

G) All Youth Groups and Choirs with members under the age of 18 shall be supervised by at least two adults, one of whom is a designated leader/director; 

H) No adult may be alone with any child under the age of 18, other than his/her own child, at any time  while on Our Congregation's property or while participating in any off-site activity sponsored by Our Congregation;

I) Everyone on Church property at any time or who participates in any Church related activity is asked to notify the Safety Officer(s) or a Council member whenever any situation occurs that may affect the safety and security of individuals and/or Church property.  

J) All sanctioned group activities of Our Congregation involving children under the age of 18 occurring off Church property shall follow Offsite Activity Procedures


Related Policies: CORI; Amendments to Policies