You are here

Child Safety

Unitarian Church of Baton Rouge Safety Policies & Procedures

Discipline

RE teachers are provided with a consistent discipline method to use in dealing with children who behave in a disruptive or dangerous manner in the classroom. No physical discipline or verbal abuse by teachers is permitted.

Snacks

Snacks provided during R.E. classes are not meant to be breakfast, nor are they dessert. Please make sure your children eat before coming to class. Snacks, if served at all, will usually be crackers and water though sometimes we have special treats. If your child has food allergies, please note them clearly on the child’s registration form.

Playground Use

Children should not be on the playground without a parent or other adult supervising.

Safe Church Protection Policy Summary

(from the policy adopted by the Congregation May 18, 2003)

We believe that there is no greater priority in our church community than creating an environment of safety for everyone — physically, emotionally and spiritually. For this reason, the Religious Education Committee prepared a child sexual abuse policy several years ago. Today, with a greater consciousness of the prevalence of abuse in church environments, we have prepared an expanded policy which will more closely guard our young people, and provide a code of conduct and a method of response for adult sexual harassment and misconduct as well as child sexual abuse.

We acknowledge that this expanded policy will result in some inconvenience to our volunteer and paid staff and committee members who administer the policy. However, the safety of our young people and the members of our community is well worth the inconvenience. Now is the time to join our hands and hearts together to form a bulwark against those who would harm any part of our congregation, calling upon our principles to affirm and promote the inherent worth and dignity of every person and to affirm and promote justice, equity, and compassion in human relations.

In keeping with the principles of this church and in light of the above stated preamble, the Unitarian Church of Baton Rouge declares itself to be a Safe Church. For the purposes of this Safe Church Protection Policy, the following definitions are used:

Sexual misconduct any instance of undesired or inappropriate sexually oriented humor, language, questions, or comments, or undesired or inappropriate physical contact, or inappropriate comments about clothing or physical appearance, or intimidated or hostile sexually oriented comments or images.

Child abuse an act committed by a parent, caregiver, or person in a position of trust that harms or threatens to harm a child's well-being or physical or mental health. Child abuse can include:

  • Physical abuse deliberately inflicting bodily harm to a child.
  • Emotional abuse subjecting a child to verbal assault or emotional cruelty, i.e. close confinement, extreme discipline, or deliberately permitting destructive behaviors such as drug or alcohol abuse.
  • Sexual abuse engaging in sexualized behavior, verbal or physical, with a child; using a child for the sexual gratification of and adult or older child or
  • Neglect chronic withholding of food, clothing, medication, and proper living quarters, as well as abandonment; can also include physical, emotional or educational neglect.

We seek to prevent these issues from arising through the following methods of supervision:

  • All classrooms are to have a window in the door.
  • Only qualified workers (those who have gone through a screening process) will be used for positions involving the supervision of children and youth and in adult leadership roles.
  • A sufficient number of adult supervisors will be present at every church sponsored activity.
  • At a minimum, two adult supervisors will be present during any church activity involving youth and children. Any exception to this rule (eg, transportation or mentoring) is permissible only upon obtaining advance parental permission and notifying the DRE.
  • Parental permission will be obtained for youth participation in any lock-in or church-sponsored event that takes place away from the church site.
  • The DRE is to be informed in advance of the identity of adult supervisors for all church sponsored overnight activities involving children and youth.
  • Appropriate church nursery identification procedure will be used.
  • Reporting procedures are to be followed promptly upon noticing any suspected neglect or abuse.

A full copy of the policy is available on request.