Keeping Our Children Safe
If you volunteer with children at St. Max, please take a few moments to read this. Thank you.
The Archdiocese of Cincinnati has made several changes as part of their ongoing commitment to a safe environment for children. These changes are explained below. What has not changed is that no cleric, employee or regular volunteer is to have contact with children without first being approved by the Archdiocese. Approval consists of attending a VIRTUS® training, staying current on monthly VIRTUS® bulletins, and a background check. All regular volunteers who have contact with children must be approved before beginning ministry. We trust you will understand the need to be 100% compliant as your dedication to our children is evidence of your love and concern for them. July 1, 2014, is the drop-dead date for active volunteers who need to complete the approval process to do so and stay in ministry. If you have any questions about your status as a regular volunteer, please contact Ruth in the parish office (777-4322 ext. 111).
Decree on Child Protection
The Decree was updated in July 2013. The definition of a “regular volunteer” has changed. Under the new decree, a regular volunteer is someone who has contact with children: on any overnight event; on at least a monthly basis; or in a multi-day program (e.g., Vacation Bible School). Please visit the Archdiocesan website, www.catholiccincinnati.org for a complete copy of the revised decree.
As you may remember, as of Spring 2013 all St. Max volunteers, whether previously approved or not, were to have attended a VIRTUS® training session to volunteer with children. If you have not attended a VIRTUS® session, you can register by going to www.virtus.org. You can attend a training session (generally three hours) anywhere in the Archdiocese. You must pre-register for the VIRTUS® session; walk-ins are not allowed.
Part of the VIRTUS® program is the ongoing education component via online monthly bulletins. The bulletins cover a variety of topics and are meant to deepen the awareness formed at the VIRTUS® training session. Effective July 1, 2014, any person who misses three or more monthly bulletins will be suspended and will need to speak with Fr. Geoff to be reinstated. They may be required to attend another full VIRTUS® session before they are allowed any further contact with children. Approval is no longer once and done; you must stay current on bulletins to stay approved.
Effective January 1, 2014, the Archdiocese changed the way it does background checks. SELECTiON.COM, a national, Catholic faith-based background check company located in the Cincinnati area, began providing all background check services for the Archdiocese. The background check is done online and can be accessed via your VIRTUS® account if you already have one, or as part of the VIRTUS® registration for new volunteers. There is a $25 cost for the background check. St. Max will pay for our volunteers; you must contact the parish office in advance for a code to use during the SELECTiON.COM registration. Current volunteers must have completed fingerprinting in the last five years or have completed an online background check via SELECTiON.COM to be approved to work with children. The deadline for being in compliance with this is July 1, 2014. If you are unsure whether you need to complete an online background check, please contact Ruth in the parish office or call 513-777-4322.
Thanks for your ongoing commitment to keeping our children safe.