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Office of Human Resources and College of Social Work

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1 Office of Human Resources and College of Social Work
Understanding Your Role Protecting Minors at Ohio State Introductions – Take a few moments to introduce yourself and your history in working with camps at Ohio State. You may also want to go around the room and have everyone introduce themselves and share if they’ve ever had training in child abuse prevention. If you have someone who has been trained previously, invite them to speak up and share any experiences they may have encountered as well. By engaging these seasoned professionals, you may have less resistance from them during the training that they are having to hear this message again. Once introductions are finished, set the stage for the importance and sensitivity of this training. Remind everyone that this is a very sensitive topic and that many in this room may have themselves experienced or witness child abuse in the past. Also be sure to recognize and acknowledge that many in the audience could find the topic of child abuse difficult to speak about publicly. Finally, stress that employees must overcome their fear about speaking about child abuse as it is now part of their responsibility to promote a safe environment for minors who attend OSU programs and camps. A slide on background checks is not included, however leaders need to be aware that background checks are required. It is important to emphasize at this juncture that background checks are not enough to guarantee that minors are safe on campus.

2 Every Child Deserves a Safe Childhood
Children have the right to: Safety Protection from abuse, neglect, exploitation and discrimination Safe, healthy home with adequate food and clothing An environment where they can grow and reach their potential Respect Oftentimes when working with youth, adults forget that all kids have a number of rights. This slide includes five main rights that all children should be provided. Emphasize to the audience that OSU is very proud to be offering a number of kids each year with all five of these rights. OSU Camps often help many at-risk youth have a safe place to stay during the summer, and provide access to food and an enriching environment. Once you have reviewed this slide, move onto the next slide and explain exactly why everyone is here today.

3 To become aware of the frequency of child abuse
Why Are We Here? To become aware of the frequency of child abuse To understand the types of abuse and common indicators To understand your duty to report whether they observe the incident directly or it is reported to them by someone else or they have reasonable cause to believe that abuse has occurred or may occur To know how to report suspected child abuse To become aware of Standards of Behavior To understand our accountability Talk through this slide with your audience. Make sure to highlight that this program is currently for the University’s on-campus child care program, overnight camps and 4-H camps and programs, which annually serve thousands of minors. Remind them that minors, like all people, have a fundamental right to be safe. Recent events at other schools have provided us the opportunity at OSU to: Educate our staff about the prevalence of child abuse, nationally and locally; Examine and enhance our policies related to interactions between adults and minors who participate in University programs; Ensure that University staff understand their “duty to report” child; and Ensure that University staff understand the procedure for reporting child abuse.

4 Living With Child Abuse
While many of us like to believe that the children we are serving aren’t facing child abuse, the reality is that many children are living in abusive situations. The following video provides some recent statistics related to what’s happening related to Child abuse in the U.S. Share this with your audience. Ask them if they were startled or surprised by any of the statistics.

5 The reality of child abuse
Franklin County Children Services Services include: Addressing more than 13,000 reports of child abuse each year Investigating 7,857 reports of abuse in 2011 Investigating 4,284 reports of neglect in 2011 Provides services to more than 28,000 children annually Read through these reporting statistics with your audience. It is also important to point out at this point that despite there being 13,000 reports, almost 1/3 of these were related to neglect and oftentimes these reports may be on the same child and/or family. Please also make sure to indicate that Children Services is more than “removing children from homes.” They provide families with needed supports and services to not only protect the child but also to preserve the family. No one wants to remove a child from their parent, but in some extreme cases this does occur.

6 Understanding child abuse
WHAT IS CHILD ABUSE? At this point, let your audience know that you are going to be getting into the “meat” of the presentation about the signs and symptoms of child abuse. Ask the audience: “What is child abuse?” What comes to mind when you hear this word? Once they have answered, move onto the next slide and give the definition of child abuse.

7 What is Child Abuse? Any action that results in harm, potential for harm, or threat of harm to a child Four main forms: Physical abuse Sexual abuse Emotional abuse Neglect Share this slide with your audience. Did their examples or definitions of child abuse match? Did they think of emotional abuse or neglect? Oftentimes, these two types of child abuse are not thought of but can be just as detrimental to the development of a child. Transition: In addition to understanding the general definition, it is important to understand the common labels / types of abuse. It allows for us to consider typical symptoms or signs that may indicate abuse has occurred.

8 The signs: Physical Abuse
Physical abuse is defined as any physical injury or death inflicted other than by accidental means Unexplained burns Unexplained bruises on the face, lips, mouth, back, buttocks, and thighs Human bites Multiple hospital visits Seems frightened of parents and does not want to go home WHAT TO LOOK FOR AT CAMP: Unexplained bruises or burns Fear of going home Fear of going with a particular staff member Physical force used by parents Walk your audience through this slide. Provide them examples of what physical abuse looks like and also common examples of what is often seen at camps. If you have an example from your own camp, please share it here as this helps the audience understand that this has been seen at your camp before.

9 The signs: Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse occurs when a person uses power over a child, and directly involves the child in any sexual act, involves the child in pornography, or forces the child to witness sexual acts Suddenly refuses to participate in physical activities Exhibits unusual sexual knowledge or behavior Frequent and unexplained sore throats Yeast or urinary infections Torn or bloody underclothes Aggressively initiates sexual contact with another child WHAT TO LOOK FOR: Unusual sexual knowledge or behavior Child-to-child sexual contact Bruises on inner thighs or other “no touch” areas Fear of being alone with a particular camper or staff member Walk your audience through this slide. Provide them examples of what sexual abuse looks like and also common examples of what is often seen at camps. If you have an example from your own camp, please share it here as this helps the audience understand that this has been seen at your camp before. Reminder: Remember to keep reiterating to your audience that we are OSU are concerned with identifying not only if one of our employees is abusing a child, but also protecting kids from anything that might occur outside of camp. For instance, if you see bruising on a child’s inner thighs, you should be making a report of child abuse, even if you don’t think anyone at OSU was responsible.

10 The Signs: Emotional Abuse
Emotional abuse is a pattern of harmful interactions between the parent and child such as criticizing, belittling, rejecting, or withholding love resulting in impaired psychological growth and development Eating issues (anorexia, bulimia, etc.) Nervous habits (tics, washing hands, biting nails, extreme anxiety, etc.) Cruel behavior – using physical force or words to hurt another camper, staff member or animal. Lack of emotional attachment to parent WHAT TO LOOK FOR AT CAMP: Not eating or overeating at camp meals Extreme nervous habits – nail biting, tics, washing hands, etc. Parent/child interactions using inappropriate language or name calling Walk your audience through this slide. Provide them examples of what emotional abuse looks like and also common examples of what is often seen at camps. If you have an example from your own camp, please share it here as this helps the audience understand that this has been seen at your camp before. Let your audience know that emotional abuse is often one the hardest types of abuse to identify given there are very little parent/child interactions at camps. Also not all nervous habits are related to emotional abuse but if a child seems to this obsessively, it may be cause for concern.

11 The signs: Neglect Neglect is the failure of a parent or guardian to provide for a child’s basic (i.e., food, shelter, supervision, and clothing), educational or medical needs. Neglect may exist because of the refusal to provide or because the family does not have the financial means to provide for their child Begs or steals food or money Poor hygiene Unsuitable clothing Low height and weight average Excessive absences Chronic hunger Assuming adult responsibilities (caring for younger siblings, cooking all meals, etc.) WHAT TO LOOK FOR AT CAMP: Stealing food from the lunch hall Poor shower habits/poor hygiene Dirty clothes or clothes with numerous stains and/or tears Walk your audience through this slide. Provide them examples of what neglect looks like and also common examples of what is often seen at camps. If you have an example from your own camp, please share it here as this helps the audience understand that this has been seen at your camp before. Emphasize the point that neglect may not be intentional on the part of the parent. They may just not have the financial means to provide for their child. In many cases, a referral to Children Services will help them get the resources they need to provide adequate care for their child.

12 How can you help prevent child abuse at camps?
In working with children, under appropriate conditions, the following may be permissible forms of non-verbal communication: hand to shoulder contact, side by side hugs, rustling of hair, pats on the head, “high fives,” handshakes, eye contact and smiles Staff may not touch children on areas of their bodies that would be covered by a swimsuit Physical restraint (staff confining a child by holding the child appropriately) is only to be used in situations where a child puts himself/herself or others in danger and must be documented in writing While it is important to understand how to identify child abuse, there are also a number of way we can help prevent child abuse from occurring while youth are at OSU. Share with your audience the policies in the slide. Remind them that these guidelines are not only for the safety of minors, but also protects the adults working in these programs. There are often questions around the bullet point of physical restraint. If you have an example from your camp where physical restraint had to be used, share it. A common example to use is when two youth get in a heated argument during a sporting contest and it becomes physical. Often in these cases, an adult must intervene and physically pull one of the children away.

13 What does it mean to “suspect” child abuse?
Avoid one adult/one child interactions Preventing Child Abuse in High Opportunity Areas: Dorm rooms/sleeping facility Complete regular room checks Do not allow camp staff to be alone in a room with a child (always take another adult or another camper) Restrooms and showers Do not allow camp staff to be alone in a restroom with a child (always take another adult or another camper) Share with your audience the policy in the slide: avoiding one adult/one child interactions. Remind them that these guidelines are not only for the safety of minors, but also protects the adults working in these programs. This guidelines is trying to help OSU reduce the risks posed by: Interactions with adults Interactions with other minors Sexual assault Hazing and bullying A general rule of thumb to share is: “Triplets” or “Always in Groups of 3.” This means either two youth and one adult or two adults and one youth. Remind the audience that risks can vary based on location, activities, affiliation, age, and number of youth. The age of youth participants, the location of the event, the nature of the activity must be considered when determining the staff-to-youth ratio. American Camp Association guidelines can serve as guidelines as you determine your number of staff needed At this point, let the audience know that the remainder of the presentation will focus on “how to report” if you do in fact have an suspicion of child abuse with one of the OSU youth.

14 What does it mean to “suspect” child abuse?
A camp staff member may suspect child abuse if the child: demonstrates the signs A child confides abuse to the worker Or the worker witnesses an incident of abuse and/or neglect This slide is intended to help clarify what it means to “suspect.” Emphasize to the audience that often times child abuse it suspected because: you see a sign or symptom, a child tells you they are being abused, or you witness it. If you have an example from your camp, provide an example of each type of situation. Also remind the audience that it is not their job to “confirm” abuse is happening, although they need to do is suspect. It is often also helpful to share that you would probably feel better if you acted on your suspicions, then realizing that a child had died. Act on your instincts.

15 What if a child confides in me?
If a child begins to confide in you about suspected abuse, be sure to follow these steps: Listen to the child Reassure the child Remain calm and collected Provide any immediate help you can offer the child to ensure safety Do not promise the child you will not tell anyone; you must report Do not share the information learned from the child with the alleged perpetrator Follow the steps outlined in this presentation This slide is included to provide the audience with a few reminders of how to address a situation if a youth does confide in them. The biggest three take-homes for the audience should be: 1) don’t promise the child you can’t tell anyone, 2) Do not share the information with the alleged perpetrator (even if this is their PARENT), 3) you must report. Make sure to call attention to the fact if you notify a parent who may be abusing a child, you are putting the child in a very serious situation.

16 Who should report child abuse?
The reality is that EVERYONE CAN AND SHOULD report suspected child abuse and/or neglect As a camp staff member, you MUST report suspected child abuse and/or neglect You have a duty to report Finally, make sure all participants realize that even though they are now legally required, ALL citizens can and should report child abuse. You do not need to be a mandated reporter to report. We all have an ethical duty to ensure that our children are safe and supported. Once again remind the audience that if they suspect child abuse, they MUST report it. They are now legally obligated as a mandated reporter.

17 Who is responsible for reporting child abuse?
The Ohio Revised Code established reporting responsibilities to a specific group of individuals: Animal control officers/agents, attorneys, audiologists, child care workers, children services personnel, coroners, day care personnel, dentists, nurses, physicians including hospital interns and residents, podiatrists, psychiatrists, school authorities, employees and teachers, social workers, speech pathologists and other professions identified by Ohio Revised Code Section (A)(1)(b) The report MUST be made to the county Children Services Agency or a municipal or a county peace officer in the county in which the child resides or in which the abuse is occurring or has occurred Ohio State Policy REQUIRES that ALL camp staff report suspected child abuse During this slide, provide the audience with an understanding that there are many misconceptions about reporting child abuse. Many professions are mandated by Ohio Law to report. Review the list provided. Once this is stated, let the audience know that as part of OSU (regardless of their other professional status) they are now a MANDATED reporter.

18 How do you meet your Duty to Act responsibilities?
If you witness or you reasonably believe that there is a substantial threat, you must: Immediately report the child abuse, child neglect, child sexual abuse to the appropriate office/individual as described on the next slide. Complete the Child Abuse, Sex Abuse, or Neglect Incident Report Form as thoroughly as possible. Submit the Child Abuse, Sex Abuse, or Neglect Incident Report Form to the Office of Human Resources and keep a copy for your records. Cooperate fully and promptly with any requests for information. Use the Anonymous Reporting Line. Be aware that you will need to disclose your identity when filing the report through this line. Exercise sound judgment when discussing any reports with third parties. The following slide provides an overview of the steps to adhere to when reporting child abuse. Review these steps with the audience and see if there are any questions. Remind the participants to keep a paper trail so that they can always show that they acted as directed.

19 What are your reporting duties (requirements) ?
If you witness child abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect OR you believe there is a substantial threat of child abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect, you must: Contact Children Services Agency – 24 hour Child Abuse Hotline at (Franklin County only) OR Contact a municipal or county peace officer (Local law enforcement authority – 911) AND Contact University Police at 911

20 What additional reporting options do you have?
You may also use the Ohio State Anonymous Reporting Line, available on the Ohio State website (must disclose identity when filing the report) https://secure.ethicspoint.com/domain/media/en/gui/7689/index.html Complete a Whistleblower Report, available on the Ohio State Office of Human Resources website

21 What are the background checks requirements?
All employees and volunteers working with minors in overnight camps must have a BCI background check at the time of hire. After hire, a BCI check is required every four years. FBI check required only if the employee/volunteer has not lived in Ohio for five consecutive years. All employees/volunteers who have a break in service for any period of time must have a new BCI background check. LexisNexis background check alone is insufficient to meet the above requirements. Background checks from other organizations cannot be accepted as replacements for our own background checks.

22 What is the Statement of Nonconviction requirement?
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS), “Statement of Nonconviction” must be completed every year.

23 Responsibilities for Self-Disclosure
Once employed, employees/volunteers must self-disclose any felony or misdemeanor convictions within three days of pleading guilty or being convicted. Employees/volunteers that fail to disclose criminal convictions and/or misdemeanors and/or fail to cooperate in the background check process may not be hired or will be subject to corrective action up to and including termination.

24 What are Standards of Behavior?
The “Standards of Behavior” is an agreement that employees and volunteers are required to sign and abide by while at Ohio State (optional for minor participants). These “standards” are a guide for employee, volunteer and minor participant behavior. University departments are required to: Issue Standards of Behavior to all employees and volunteers working with minors. Inform and train employees on the policy “Preventing and Reporting Abuse in Programs with Minor Participants.” Promote consistent application of policies and procedures. Monitor behavior and address inappropriate behavior as necessary. We must and will monitor staff to ensure they follow procedures and abide by “standards of Behavior.” Standards of Behavior- show them handout sample- we require that they use the SOB for staff and volunteers they can expand our template if they like We are deferring to the units to use the Standards of Behavior for Minors based upon individual needs and nature of the work the minor is to perform

25 What accountability mechanisms are available under the policy?
Individuals violating this policy will be held accountable for their actions. Consequences are: Faculty – subject to University Rule Staff and student employees – subject to corrective action up to and including termination. Students – subject to the Code of Student Conduct and expectations of the Minor Program. Volunteers – subject to reprimand or loss of volunteer status. Minor participants – may face disciplinary action up to and including removal from the program. The University views compliance as a serious matter. Staff will be held accountable. Consequences for failing to follow Policy Staff will be held accountable and can face disciplinary proceedings as stated on slide.

26 What resources are available?
Children’s Services Agency - 24 hour Child Abuse Hotline at (Franklin County only) (Contact other County Agencies as appropriate) Municipal or County Peace Officer (Local Law Enforcement Agency) - 911 University Police - Columbus - 911; counties - contact local law enforcement Office of Legal Affairs , Michael Layish, Missy Mayhan OHR/Employee and Labor Relations Unit HRP and/or supervisor Child Abuse, Sexual Abuse or Neglect Incident Report Anonymous Reporting Line - https://secure.ethicspoint.com/domain/media/en/gui/7689/index.html Whistleblower Report - Employee Assistance Program - Resources to use when need to report Policy and all resources for the training are on our website in the “Resource” section of policy Take questions.

27 Available on the Ohio State Office of Human Resources Policy website:
Training materials All training materials needed for the delivery of this presentation can be found in the Resources/Training Materials Section of Preventing and Reporting Abuse in Programs with Minor Participants, Policy 1.50 Available on the Ohio State Office of Human Resources Policy website:

28 Together we can prevent or eliminate abuse


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