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Creating Safe Environment

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Presentation on theme: "Creating Safe Environment"— Presentation transcript:

1 Creating Safe Environment
In Salesian Setting Fr. Steve Ryan SDB

2 Youth Work is a rewarding Apostolate –
but not without dangers

3 Don Bosco – A Man with Vision – A Model of Chastity
“Be vigilant – regarding your words, your deeds, your touch, your demeanor. ….Upon words and looks, even when indifferent, a bad interpretation is often put by young people who have been the victims of human passion”. – Don Bosco

4 The Present Crisis in the Church
The Church and the Salesian Society never condone or have never condoned the horrific acts of sexual misconduct with children!

5 What Can We Do? Practice the Preventive System – thoroughly and completely Assistance: concern for the group – no favoritism Prevention: Prevent disorders, unhappiness, sin, immorality and the exploitation of young people by doing the right thing, at the right time – in the right way!

6 What Can We Do? Remember BOUNDARIES: never put yourself in a situation where an accusation could occur RESPONSIBILITY: Be where you are supposed to be – doing what you are supposed to be doing as someone assigned to be protecting and guiding young people ACCOUNTABILITY: Always let your superior know what you are doing REPORT SUSPECTED VIOLATIONS

7 Practical Points Never find yourself alone, in a secluded place, with a child –if no one else is around –get out into the public where people are! Watch your speech-careless remarks about someone’s body – even as a total joke can harm & hurt & may be used against you as sexual harassment/abuse. (Knick-names) – DO NOT USE THEM If you find yourself enjoying working & being around 1 particular young person – examine your motivations – Are you going out of your way to help this “lost” or “obnoxious” child or are you just attracted to her/him?

8 Practical Points Your office or meeting room should always have at least one window – keep the door open – Try to have private conversations in public places Be out in the open! We conduct our mission with the young – publicly! No one should ever drive a minor home by him/herself Your living quarters are your living quarters –keep them private. No minor is ever to be invited to your home or room. Correct/report & challenge suggestive talk – do not allow such talk at Salesian Youth centers.

9 Practical Points There is no reason to go to a young persons home.
Be open to the families of the youth we serve, (not just the youngster in the family) – Get to know the family – the parents. Identify yourself to the parents—on the phone and in person. Know when you feel attracted to someone –put up a self-made boundary Sex education is done in a group setting –if/when parents/institutional permission is granted for it. It is not your job to do sex education stuff! Movies – no R rated with minors!

10 Practical Points Discipline and Prayers! – Know yourself as a sexual person! TOUCH – There is “proper” & “improper”. Be prudent with touch – in general there is no reason to touch a minor. Modesty – appropriate dress ACCOUNTABILITY: Tell your director/boss where you are going & what you are doing! – In a family you tell your parents what you are up to! KNOW YOURSELF AS A SEXUAL PERSON: Take care of your emotional health! Keep balance emotionally! When we have our affectivity needs met – there is very little chance for improper sexual behaviors being used.

11 Scope of the Problem 1 in 4 girls 1 in 8 boys 15% of school children
57% of abuse in schools is perpetrated by males 43% of abuse in schools is perpetrated by females 300% increase in child to child abuse 40 – 50% of all child molestations are committed by juveniles

12 Effects of Sexual Abuse on Victims
Poor self-esteem Guilt & Shame Anxious Withdrawal form activities Fears & Phobias Homicidal ideation Suicidal Ideation Learned helplessness Psychological

13 Effects of Sexual Abuse on Victims
Educational Truancy Poor concentration Drop in grades

14 Effects of Sexual Abuse on Victims
Behavioral Eating disorders Bed-wetting Substance abuse Nightmares Running away Impulsivity Defiance Self-mutilation

15 Effects of Sexual Abuse on Victims
Interpersonal Argumentative Hostile Dependent Aggressive Poor boundaries

16 Effects of Sexual Abuse on Victims
Preoccupation with sex Increased masturbation Confused sexual orientation Promiscuity Prostitution Molestation of others

17 Who Abuses? Types of Offenders
Type I. The Preferential Offender This is a person who would rather have a child for a social, romantic & sexual partner than an adult. This person will seek jobs, volunteer work, & other activities where he or she will have ample opportunities to access the preferred type of child (gender, age, physical characteristics). Type II. The Situational Offender This is a person who does not necessarily prefer children, but offends under a certain set of circumstances. This person often offends during a difficult time in his or her life & may be more likely to offend when he or she is intoxicated or severely depressed or anxious.

18 Who Abuses? Types of Offenders
Type III. The Sadistic or Indiscriminant Offender This is a person who will simply prey on any available vulnerable person: a child, an adult with mental retardation, a teenager in the hospital or an elderly person. Their arousal pattern is attached more to the pain & suffering of the victim than to the specific physical characteristics of the victim.

19 Characteristics of Offenders
Childhood History MALE FEMALE Abused as a child Raised in excessively strict home Psychiatric problems Poor school performance Delinquent or Caregiver inconsistency antisocial actions Caregiver inconsistency

20 Characteristics of Offenders
Personality Characteristics MALE FEMALE Low self esteem Exhibits poor judgment Distorted beliefs Illogical or bizarre thinking about sex Distorted beliefs Overall sense of inadequacy about children Not a team player Denies stress Sees self as a victim

21 Characteristics of Offenders
Behaviors MALE FEMALE Uses alcohol or Uses alcohol or other drugs other drugs Poor impulse control Few accomplishments Easily Frustrated Deceitful Prior arrests for other types of offenses

22 Characteristics of Offenders
Interpersonal Relationships MALE FEMALE Prefers to interact Lonely, socially isolated with children Pattern of dating Married as a teenager single mothers Unable to form Single, divorced or attachments dysfunctional marriage

23 Characteristics of Offenders
Employment MALE FEMALE Frequent or abrupt More likely to be relocations caregiver Unstable work history Un–or underemployed Anxious to be hired for position with children

24 Characteristics of Offenders
Interactions with Children MALE FEMALE Distorted perception More likely to use seduction of children Prefers one-on-one Seeks affection from children interactions w/ children Photographs children Blames children Select hobbies appealing to children Identifies with children better than adults

25 Spot the Warning Signs Pay attention to the warning signs of preferential offenders Finds reason to spend time alone with minors. Prefers time with minors than time with peers. Gives gifts to minors, especially without permission. Goes overboard with physical contact with minors. Always wants to wrestle or tickle minors. Shows favoritism toward certain minors.

26 Spot the Warning Signs Treats minors like equals or adults
Keep secrets with minors. Ignores policies about interacting with minors. Break the rules. Uses inappropriate language with minors. Tells “off-color” jokes to minors.

27 Spot the Warning Signs Pay attention to the warning signs of situational offenders Excessively using alcohol. Uses drugs. Experiencing anxiety or depression. Having trouble coping with loneliness. Facing rejection or disappointment. Coping with personal loss. Feels unappreciated & unrewarded for hard work. Becoming increasingly dependent on a “convenient” relationship with a minor, such as a minor who works in the house or is already involved with an individual.

28 Keep Yourself Safe Behaviors that have led to false allegations of abuse: Meeting alone in isolated places. Showing favoritism. Engaging in physical contact that was misinterpreted. Wearing provocative or revealing attire. Giving money to a “special” minor. Meeting in homes & in bedrooms without others present. Being nude in front of minors. Sleeping in the bed with minors. Giving special or secret gifts.

29 Keep Yourself Safe Behaviors that have led to false allegations of abuse: Graphically discussing sexual activities or allowing others to do so. Keeping “secrets” about relationships. Failing to adhere to uniform or accepted standards of affection. Showing affection when no one else was around. Staring while others were dressing. Commenting on minor’s bodies. Taking pictures while minors are dressing or showering. Shaming or belittling an individual.

30 Boundary Violations Physical boundary violations means touching too much or touching in ways most adults would not touch a child.

31 Boundary Violations Emotional Boundary Violations means treating the relationship with a child as if it were a romantic or intimate adult relationship.

32 Boundary Violations Behavioral boundary violations means involving a child in activities that his or her parents would not allow the child to do.

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