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About Praesidium Incorporated in 1992.

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Presentation on theme: "About Praesidium Incorporated in 1992."— Presentation transcript:

0 Screening & Selection for Staff
March 28th, 2013 Aaron Lundberg, LMSW I

1 About Praesidium Incorporated in 1992.
National leader in abuse risk management. Over 4,000 clients internationally. Train, screen, investigate, assess, and accredit organizations worldwide for organizations worldwide. Partners with University of California 1

2 What We Believe Abuse can be prevented.
Everyone is responsible for preventing abuse. Abuse prevention requires a commitment to quality. Commitment starts at the top. 2

3 The Problem Adult-to-Child Abuse Child-to-Child Abuse
False Allegations 3

4 The Solution: Praesidium Safety Equation™
The role of screening 4

5 Types of Child Molesters
Type I. Predatory / Preferential Type II. Opportunistic / Situational Type III. Indiscriminate How They Operate: APC Model Access Privacy Control 5

6 Know The Warning Signs Pay attention to an adult who…
Always finds reasons to spend time alone with children or youth. Prefers time and friendships with children or youth more than adults. Gives special gifts to children or youth, especially without permission. Goes overboard with touching children or youth. Always wants to wrestle and tickle with children or youth. Bends the rules for certain children or youth. Allows children to engage in activities their parents would not allow. Has “favorite” or preferred children or youth. Favors children or youth with certain physical characteristics. Prefers to be with children who are particularly vulnerable. 6

7 Know The Warning Signs (Cont.)
Pay attention to an adult who… Treats children or youth as if they were adults. Discourages other adults from participating or monitoring. Wants to keep secrets with children or youth. Ignores standard policies about interacting with children or youth. Seems to think the rules do not apply to them. Uses inappropriate language or swearing with children or youth. Tells “off-color” jokes to children or youth Introduces pornography to children or youth. Takes photographs of nude or partially nude children or youth. Seems to have an “obsession” with children or youth. 7

8 Why Screening And Selection Is Important
First line of defense against abuse. Restricts access to youth-the only opportunity to stop an offender prior to access. Protects organization. 8

9 Why Organizations Can’t Rely on Criminal Background Checks
Most offenders do not have a criminal record. Criminal background checks are not always accurate. 9

10 Managing Your Screening Resources
Consider your time valuable. Place responsibility on the applicant during the early stages of the screening process. Save time and effort intensive tasks for the latter stages of the screening process. Screen for disqualifiers early in the process. Use the observation of others. Eliminate unfit applicants as soon as possible. Include interim decision-points in the application process. 10

11 Encouraging High-Risk Applicants To Self-Select Out
Will you offend good applicants? Inform applicants that you take abuse seriously. Inform applicants that you are screening specifically to ensure the safety of children and vulnerable adults. Inform applicants that the organization fully cooperates with authorities in cases of abuse. Inform applicants that interactions with children will be monitored. Require applicants to sign a Code of Ethics. 11

12 How to Use Your Application to Assess for Abuse Risk
Use an application that allows hiring managers to quickly assess for red flags. Identify red flags in the application. Communicate a zero tolerance for abuse. 12

13 Red Flags In Applications
Gaps in dates (employment, residence). Conflicting information. Incorrect information. Omitted information. Incomplete information. Unstable work history. Vague reasons for leaving previous jobs. Unwilling to use former supervisors as references. Short term relationships with references. Overeducated for position. Moving to a lesser-paying job. Patterns or themes of preferences for a particular age range. Patterns or themes of problems with authority. Found out about position without a clear connection. 13

14 Best Practices In Interviewing
Set the right tone. Structure the interview. Ask the right questions. 14

15 Set The Right Tone Create a sense of privacy. Minimize barriers.
Use an open communication style. Create an environment that encourages honesty. Decrease the consequences of telling the truth. 15

16 Structure The Interview
20/80 principle. Introduction. Greeting/Creating the Right First Impression Realistic Description of the Position Discuss Hiring Process and Importance of a Honest Assessment of Strengths and Areas of Development Zero Tolerance for Abuse Statement Review the Application Take notes. Use more than one person. 16

17 Ask The Right Questions
Use behaviorally-based interview questions. Ask questions designed to assess for abuse risk. Ask questions designed to assess desired applicant skills. 17

18 Behavioral Interviewing Techniques
Best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. What past behavior do you want to learn about?  Skills Examples: Work Habits   Ethical Behavior Creating behaviorally based interviewing questions. 18

19 Performance Skills Trainability Policy adherence Patience
Supportiveness Judgment Boundaries 19

20 Interview Questions Why are you interested in this position?
With what group of children would you prefer to work? Why? Tell me about some of your hobbies or volunteer work. Tell me about a time in your life when you had to quickly learn how to do something. What did you have to learn? How did you learn it? Did you use the new information? Often in school or work, we’re expected to adhere to policies that don’t really make sense to us. Tell me about a time when you had to stick to a rule, even though it didn’t seem reasonable. How did you handle that situation? Give me an example of a time when a child or vulnerable adult really tried your patience. Specifically, tell me what happened. How did you respond to the situation? Describe the two most frustrating situations you have ever had to deal with involving children and how you handled them. Have you ever abused or molested a child? Describe a time when you were personally supportive and reassuring to a person who needed a friend. How did you know that person was in need? How did you show your support? Tell me about a time when someone commended you for your good judgment and common sense. What was the situation and how did you handle it? 20

21 Red Flags In Interviews
Defensive/angry responses Patterns of gaining access to children Themes of preferences for particular children Found out about position via “Drop in” Perception that children are “helpless” or “vulnerable” Patterns consistent with high-risk characteristics Evasive responses 21

22 Deceptive Responses: 16 Ways To Lie Without Really Lying
Unfinished “I Can’t…” Hypothetically structured phrase Hard question Objection Non Reflective denial of knowledge Maintenance of dignity Interrogatory Projection No proof Accusatory The answer is… Rambling dissertation The answer does not equal the question Denial of presence Speech errors 22

23 Best Practices in Reference Checking
Check the right type of references. Put the responsibility on the applicant. Ask the right questions. Document, Document, Document. 23

24 How To Obtain High-Quality References
Review the list of references with the applicant. Inform the applicant that s/he is responsible for making sure that the references are willing to talk with you and provide a reference. Give the applicant a deadline for contacting the reference. Make sure the list contains accurate phone numbers. Use a standard reference form for each call, but be sure to modify questions so that you can learn about the specific experiences the reference has had with the applicant. Be friendly and always treat the references with respect. They will feel more comfortable in the hands of a professional. Take notes during the call. Write short quotes from the reference to prompt your memory. Review and elaborate upon your notes immediately after the call. Note areas of concern or questions to be clarified with other references or the applicant. 24

25 Questions To Ask Professional References
We are looking for someone who will adhere to the standard policies of our organization. How would you rate the applicant’s ability to follow policies and procedures? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to relate to children? Can you give me an example of how the applicant relates to children? In what types of situations have you observed the applicant not working well with children (becoming frustrated, angry, resentful or non-productive)? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to maintain appropriate boundaries with children? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to use good judgment in stressful conditions? Are you aware of any reason why we should not allow the applicant to work with the children we serve? 25

26 Questions To Ask Personal References
How long have you known the applicant? What is your relationship to the applicant? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to work with and relate to children? Can you give me an example of how the applicant relates to children? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to be patient and stay calm? Have you ever known the applicant to use harsh or abusive discipline with a child? Would you be comfortable placing one of your own loved ones in the care of the applicant? Why or why not? What are the applicant’s hobbies and recreational activities? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to relate to adults? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to be genuinely supportive and understanding to a person in need? How would you rate the applicant’s ability to maintain appropriate boundaries with children? 26

27 Red Flags For Reference Checks
Reluctant references. Reference did not know the applicant well. No references from recent position. Do not know the applicant well. Deceptive responses or refusal to answer. Differs from the applicant’s account. Characteristics associated with adults who abuse. Would not rehire the applicant. Not informed they would be used as a reference. References that cannot be contacted. 27

28 Making Selection Decisions
Follow a process. Document the process. Review all data. Don’t get rushed. Allow time to follow-up. Identify who is responsible. Make a decision. 28

29 Risk Level Evaluation High Risk Checklist for Application
Use the following checklists to evaluate applicant levels of risk to abuse youth. Consider information gathered throughout the screening process. High Risk Checklist for Application Application has gaps in dates for employment, education or residence. Application includes conflicting or incorrect information. Application has omitted or incomplete information. The applicant has an unstable work history. The applicant provides vague reasons for leaving previous jobs. The applicant is unwilling to use former supervisors as references. The applicant is overeducated or overqualified for this or other positions with youth. The applicant is moving to a lesser-paying job. The application shows a pattern of work and volunteer positions with the same type of youth. The work pattern shows themes of problems with authority. The applicant found out about position through dropping in on the program. The applicant describes youth as helpless, vulnerable or perfect. 29

30 Risk Level Evaluation (Cont.)
High Risk Checklist for Interview Applicant gave higher risk responses from the interpretive guide. Applicant gave defensive/angry responses. Applicant gave evasive responses. Applicant described patterns or themes of gaining access to youth or vulnerable adults. Applicant described preferences for particular youth with no reasonable explanation. Applicant described patterns or themes of problems with authority. Applicant is not applying for a specific position and is willing to accept positions which vary significantly in pay and/or responsibilities. 30

31 Risk Level Evaluation (Cont.)
High Risk Indicators for References References were reluctant. References did not know the applicant well. References have short term relationships with the applicant. References refused to answer particular questions. Reference information differed from the applicant’s account. References described applicant as having high-risk characteristics. References provided evasive responses. References reported specific concerns about the applicant. 31

32 Risk Level Evaluation (Cont.)
General High Risk Characteristics Social Isolation or difficulty interacting with adults. Uses excessive physical affection, particularly tickling or wrestling. Difficulty working as a team player or working with authority figures. Lets youth get away with things their parents would not approve of. Fails to set limits with youth. Having numerous positions which relate to the same type of youth. Having positions for which the applicant is overqualified. Using poor judgment with youth or vulnerable adults. Having difficulty handling stress or managing stressful situations. Presents a poor role model for youth. Excessively involved with individual youth. Gives gifts to youth. 32

33 Supervising for Safety: Abuse Risk Management for Supervisors

34 Your Role As A Supervisor
To support the staff and children. To supervise and coach staff. To ensure children and staff remain safe. 34

35 Role: To Support the Staff and The Children
Relationships with staff. Relationships with children. Offer support by… Listening for needs and offering resources. Advocating for staff’s and children’s needs. Allowing staff and children to vent. Offering encouragement and empathy. 35

36 Role: To Supervise and Coach Staff
Create clear expectations. Assess their skill set. Monitor expectations and performance. On the job training and modeling. Teaching Expectations: Teaching Skills: Using Incidents and Mistakes as Learning Opportunities: 36

37 Role: To Supervise and Coach Staff (Cont.)
Provide corrective feedback. Step 1. Find a good time to meet with staff. Step 2. Use a general praise statements. Step 3. State the behavior that needs to change and why. Step 4. Ask for clarification. Step 5. Introduce the corrective feedback. Step 6. Follow-up. 37

38 Role: To Supervise and Coach Staff (Cont.)
Barriers to Feedback 38

39 Factors That Effect Staff Success
What are 10 things you do to increase the likelihood staff are successful? 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 39

40 Role: To Ensure Children And Staff Remain Safe
Assess risk in the program. When to visit How often to visit What to look for on visits Conduct interviews Use other information Assessing for specific risks Respond quickly to red-flags. Avoid the tendency to minimize the concern or incident Respond quickly Communicate to others Educate and empower children. Topics to discuss with children 40

41 Assess Risk In the Program
When to visit How often to visit What to look for on visits Watch how the staff interact with the child. Do they seem at ease? Do they make eye-contact? Do they display appropriate affection? Do the staff and children interact? Do they know where the children are at all times? Do they set limits? How do the children react? 41

42 Assess Risk In the Program (cont.)
Watch how the children interact with each other. Are their interactions age appropriate? Do they respect each other’s boundaries? Does anyone bully, tease, dominate, or display sexualized behaviors towards others? Do they problem solve without fighting? Watch how the staff are supervising children. Where are they standing? Are the children in line of sight? Can they account for all of their children? Conduct interviews Interviews with staff Interviews with children 42

43 Assess Risk In the Program
Use other information Written records Incident reports Talk to others When to increase supervision? 43

44 Assessing for Specific Risks
The risk of physical abuse or inappropriate discipline. Adult Indicators: Raising their voice when speaking with children and other adults Belittling or teasing children or other adults Getting in power struggles with children Not remaining calm under stressful situations Failure to complete required documentation Failure to report incidents or injuries Failure to complete required training Not attending meetings Personalizing children’s behaviors Breaking policies and training related to de-escalation and discipline 44

45 Assessing for Specific Risks (Cont.)
The risk of adult to child sexual abuse and boundary violations. Adult indicators: Allowing children to take staff roles Rough-housing or horse playing Swearing and/or telling off-color jokes Having staff/personal discussions with children about: Other children Other adults Personal problems Personal relationships Dating or sexual activities Secrets Giving inappropriate physical affection Having a “favorite” child 45

46 Assessing for Specific Risks (Cont.)
Bending the rules for certain child Giving special gifts to only certain children Unnecessary one-on-one interactions Ignoring policies related to interacting with children The risk of child-to-child abuse. Adult Risks: Lack of knowledge of warning signs Lack of awareness of their own behaviors and how their behaviors impact the child Allows children to set the tone Immature and acts more like a child than a staff 46

47 Warning Signs in Group Dynamics
One or more child dominating others Bullying Verbal aggression Exclusion of a child Changes in leadership Avoiding supervision Sexualized nicknames Teasing about sexual orientation Exchanges of personal items Testing privacy and personal boundaries 47

48 Respond Quickly to Red-Flags
Here are some key guidelines for responding: Avoid the tendency to minimize the concern or incident Respond quickly Communicate to others 48

49 Educate and Empower Children
Topics to discuss with children Children Adolescents 49

50 The Seven Characteristics of a Culture of Safety
Standards are Clear. Standards are Enforced. Everyone Knows Safety is Part of Their Job. Everyone Takes Warning Signs Seriously. Employees Report Their Concerns. Moral is High. Quality is Institutionalized. 50

51 How Safe is Your Program?
The Seven Characteristics of a Culture of Safety… Please assign a grade of A, B, C, D, or F to the following What do I need to do differently to cultivate a culture of safety? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ What do my administrators need to do differently to cultivate a culture of safety? Aspects of your job Grade 1. Standards are clear. 2. Standards are enforced. 3. Everyone knows safety is part of their job. 4. Everyone takes warning signs seriously. 5. Employees report their concerns. 6. Moral is high. 7. Quality is institutionalized. 51

52 Praesidium Resources Online Program Self Assessment
Onsite Risk Assessment Model Youth Protection Policies Armatus® Online Training On-site Training Confidential Reporting Helpline Incident Response and Investigation Implementation Consultation Services

53 Vice President of Account Services
Contact Us Aaron Lundberg, LMSW Vice President of Account Services 53

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