SAFEGUARDING GOD'S CHILDREN
At the 74th General Convention of The Episcopal Church, the Rt. Rev. Thomas Clark Ely, of Vermont, proposed Resolution B008 entitled, "Children: Protection of Chailren and Youth from Abuse. The resolution proposed each diocese develop and adopt policies for the protection of children and youth from abuse. The policy would provide for a screening and selection process for all clergy, lay employees, and volunteers who work with or around children, including a written application, background screening, an interview, and reference checks, and a general provision that volunteers notwork with children or abuse until they have been known to clergy for a period of six months.
In 2006, the Diocese of Northwest Texas developed and published The Episcopal Diocese of Northwest Texas Policy for the Protection of Children and Youth from Abuse. (To download the policy, click the underlined link.) Likewise, Church Pension Group developed a program entitled Safeguarding God's Children, designed specifically for The Episcopal Church and its entities. The purpose of the program is to bring awareness to individuals and groups within the Episcopal Church in the area of child sexual abuse. Originally the program was only designed for use in a classroom setting through the use of video tapes or DVDs, and materials designed for use by a trained facilitator. Eventually online programs were developed in an effort to make the program as accessible as possible, especially to those in remote areas. The diocesan policy was revised in 2008, to allow for online re-certification, however, a decision was made by diocesan leadership to continue inital training in a classroom setting. Today a variety of courses are available for many different ministries within the Church.
The Safeguarding God's Children program is widely used within the diocese. Initial certification must be accomplished in a classroom setting, however, re-certification may be accomplished online. To receive training in the Safeguarding God's Children program, please contact your parish administrator, parish clergy, or the Diocesan Safe Church Administrator, Deacon Nancy Igo, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please follow the links below to download the necessary forms:
Forms may be returned to Deacon Nancy Igo, or to your parish Safeguarding Administrator.
SAFEGUARDING GOD'S PEOPLE
The Episcopal Diocese of Northwest Texas is committed to providing a healthy, safe, and nurturing environment where, by God's grace, the full work of the Church can be carried out. Sexual misconduct on the part of any clergyperson, employee, or volunteer of any congregation, institution, organization, school or agency within the diocese violates the mission of the Church, is prohibited, and will not be tolerated.
Safeguarding God's People teaches how exploitation and harassment occur, the awareness we need to prevent such occurrences, and - should exploitation or harassment occur - how to respond.
Who needs to attend?
- all clergy
- all paid employees and vestries
- youth group directors
- Sunday school directors
- Lay Eucharistic Visitors and anyone going into someone's home in any role related to the church
- worship leaders
- some volunteers
At this time we have one trainer for the diocese, Deacon Nancy Igo, the Diocesan Safe Church Administrator. To arrange training, whether online or in a class setting, please contact Deacon Nancy by sending an email, or by phone at (806) 763-1370, ext.5.