Developing A Youth Safety Mission Starts With Policies And Procedures

According to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, the safety of the youth is always its top priority.

The organization states it does not tolerate any inappropriate behavior, including child sexual abuse or sexual misconduct.

The organization requires everyone in the organization to strictly adhere to policies and guidelines within club facilities and staffing structure. They also teach young club members critical thinking and social-emotional skills to make safe and healthy choices.

The organization also advocated for the passage of the U.S. Protect Act which helped improve background screening systems and access. They have also partnered with other organizations to develop safety practices that benefit all youth-serving organizations. Boys & Girls Clubs of America "Child Safety Is Job No. 1"


Commentary and Checklist


The Boys & Girls Clubs of America (B&GCA) is a network of more than 2,600 clubs in all states, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The organization serves more than three million school-age children.

An examination of B&GCA policies and procedures reveals standards that any youth-serving organization should consider:

·  Mandatory annual criminal background checks for all staff and volunteers

·  Mandatory reporting of any suspected abuse or victimization to law enforcement and then to Boys & Girls Clubs of America

·  Each club must have a board-led safety committee

·  Each club must have an annual safety assessment

·  Leading third-party experts on training, policies, and resources, are utilized by clubs

·  Any employee looking to move to another club, must have a reference from the previous club to be eligible for rehire.

·  Sexual abuse prevention polices, practices, and trainings are continuously updated

·  Training is offered for families, staff, youth members, including the Child Safety Helpline and Crisis Text Line

·  Required communications to parents and guardians on safety policies

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