The Safety and Wellbeing of Members is Our #1 Priority
We work every day to create a safe, fun environment so kids can have every opportunity to be successful in life. We have ZERO tolerance for inappropriate behavior of any kind, including child sexual abuse or misconduct.
We implement layers of safety policies and guidelines to keep our kids safe including:
• Background checks
• Immediate reporting to authorities, and
• Periodic safety assessments
Mandatory Background Checks: Mandatory criminal background checks are required every year for staff and Board Members at the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Flathead Reservation and Lake County. In addition, criminal background checks are required for any volunteer who has direct contact with children. All potential employees and volunteers are also run through National Sex Offender Registry and state-wide criminal check.
Required Immediate Reporting: Boys & Girls Clubs of the Flathead Reservation and Lake County staff and volunteers are all mandatory reporters. We are required to immediately report any critical incidents or safety concerns to state and local authorities. Additionally, are required to report any critical incident to Boys & Girls Clubs of America within 24 hours.
Mandatory Annual Safety Assessments: Each year we complete a safety assessment of each Clubhouse to ensure we continually make improvements to safety at our Clubs.
Safety Training: Ongoing training and supervision of staff and volunteers is critical, which means our team participates in a wide variety of child safety training conducted such as seminars, conferences and webinars. Additionally, through our membership in Boys & Girls Clubs of America, we engage leading third-party safety experts to provide guidance for our policies and approaches, including Praesidium, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, and the National Children’s Advocacy Center.
Mandatory Employee Reference: Any employee interested in moving to another Boys & Girls Club is required to have a reference from the previous Club, even if the Clubs are within the same community.
State and Local Laws: We comply with all federal, state and local safety laws, including those impacting facilities and vehicles.
Safety Partnerships: As a member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, we have access to resources and support from the nation’s leading experts in the areas of safety, security and technology to develop state-of-the-art solutions for our Clubs. These partners include:
• National Child Safety Advisory Task Force, made up of leading experts and organizations
• Blue Ribbon Task-force, comprised of local Club leaders charged with providing input on the safety direction and key safety initiatives
• Mental Health First Aid, a national program that teaches skills to recognize and respond to signs of mental illness and substance abuse
• Crisis Text Line, a confidential text message service for youth in times of crisis
Nationally, Boys & Girls Clubs of America has advocated the passage of the U.S. PROTECT Act, which improved background screening systems and access. The national organization has also partnered with the FBI, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and the Centers for Disease Control to contribute to the development of safety practices that benefit ALL youth-serving organizations.
America’s young people deserve nothing less than our constant focus on their safety and our firm commitment to protect every child who is entrusted to our care at Boys & Girls Clubs of Yellowstone County. To learn more about our national safety policies and actions, please visit Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s Child Safety page, here.