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Abuse Prevention Training Now Required for Youth Leaders

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Very cool. It appears that the website is already online: link.

It's only in English at the moment and shouldn't take longer than about 30 minutes. If I get around to it on my lunch hour today, I'll report back with additional thoughts. 

 

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The Deseret News version of the article mistakenly listed Elders Quorum presidencies (and not RS presidencies) as also subject to the training.  My question is if men/women assigned youth as ministering companions need to complete the training, even if their companion is their own child? 

My thought is it should, even if it's your own child, but the church website does not enumerate it.

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, revelstoked said:

The Deseret News version of the article mistakenly listed Elders Quorum presidencies (and not RS presidencies) as also subject to the training.  My question is if men/women assigned youth as ministering companions need to complete the training, even if their companion is their own child? 

My thought is it should, even if it's your own child, but the church website does not enumerate it.

The report of who has and has not taken it is not yet up on the church website so not sure.

It is encouraged for others to take it other then those required. The instruction is for all to take it within 30 days of being sustained to a calling that requires it. I am curious if you just take it once or whether it has to be renewed.

Edited by The Nehor

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21 minutes ago, revelstoked said:

The Deseret News version of the article mistakenly listed Elders Quorum presidencies (and not RS presidencies) as also subject to the training.  My question is if men/women assigned youth as ministering companions need to complete the training, even if their companion is their own child? 

Pretty much everyone has to take it. The official communication states the following (link😞

Quote

 

As part of the Church’s ongoing effort to ensure the safety of children and youth, a new online training course for protecting children and youth has been implemented. All adults who work with children or youth are to complete the course and to renew the training every three years. Details are outlined below.

  • Members currently serving in the following callings are to complete the training by September 22, 2019:
    • Stake and district presidencies, bishoprics, and branch presidencies
    • High councilors
    • Stake, district, ward, and branch Primary, Young Men, Young Women, Sunday School, and Relief Society presidencies; elders quorum presidencies
    • Secretaries, teachers, advisers, camp leaders, activity day leaders, music leaders, pianists, and others serving in positions in the Primary, Young Men, and Young Women organizations; teachers of youth Sunday School and seminary classes
  • Members called to any of the positions listed above are to complete the training within one month of being sustained.
  • The training can be accessed at protectingchildren.ChurchofJesusChrist.org and will take about 30 minutes to complete. Each member will need to log in individually with his or her own Church account for the completion of training to be recorded. The training will be translated into additional languages over the coming months.
  • A list of members who need to complete the training will soon be available in the Leader and Clerk Resources section of ChurchofJesusChrist.org and will be updated regularly.

Stake presidents and bishops are responsible to ensure that, as needed, help and resources are available for members to access and complete the training.
In addition to those working with children and youth, parents and others are also encouraged to complete the training.

 

 

26 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

I am curious if you just take it once or whether it has to be renewed.

Renewed every three years.

 

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Since the Church will no longer be affiliated with the Boy Scouts of America, the youth protection training mandated there won't be required. I see this as basically the youth protection training that was required under scouting but expanded to include more parties. This expansion is a good thing.

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1 hour ago, Amulek said:

If I get around to it on my lunch hour today, I'll report back with additional thoughts. 

So, good news: I totally passed. 

It's presented kind of like one of those online learning modules you might have taken before, where you have to listen to the information before you can proceed to the next page. There's a transcript you can pull up and read along with as well, which I appreciated. 

Overall, I think it is a very good primer on protecting children.

Some highlights:

  • As a leader of youth, you can avoid compromising situations by not having extended, one-on-one conversations with a youth or child and by using group communication where possible. Involve and inform parents or guardians regularly, especially when you are concerned about their child.
  • Here are some types of child abuse you should be aware of and help prevent. [brief details provided for each - me]
    • Sexual
    • Physical
    • Neglect
    • Emotional
    • Teen Dating Violence
  • Anyone who knows or has cause to believe that a child has been or is a victim of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse has a solemn responsibility to do something that can ensure protection for the child.
    If you are a bishop or stake president in the United States or Canada, you should contact the abuse help line about every situation in which a person may have been abused or neglected. In other areas, bishops who learn of possible abuse should contact their stake presidents, who will seek guidance from the area office.
    If you are NOT a bishop or stake president and you learn of abuse, you should immediately contact legal authorities. Also contact your bishop for counsel and direction.
  • Take all reports of inappropriate behavior seriously and assume they happened. Remain calm, and keep communication open. Do not blame the child, question whether the abuse really happened, or suggest that the abuse somehow was his or her fault. Reassure the child of your love and confidence and that you will take appropriate steps to protect him or her. When abuse occurs, the immediate responsibility of Church leaders is to help those who have been abused and to protect vulnerable persons from future abuse.
  • Leaders should be aware of additional behavior that is inappropriate or unacceptable. In some instances, this behavior may rise to the level of abuse. [brief details provided for each - me]
    • Grooming
    • Discipline
    • Coercion
    • Harassment
    • Bullying
    • Hazing
    • Teasing
  • If you are aware of inappropriate or unacceptable behavior that is happening, you should immediately act to stop it.

All-in-all, I thought it was really well done. And since pretty much everyone will probably end up taking it at some point, it will really help to raise the level of awareness among the general membership.

 

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The training can be accessed at ProtectingChildren.ChurchofJesusChrist.org

Someone should ask Sam Young if their new website looks familiar. 

Phaedrus

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So, if you fail does that mean you can get released?🤔

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1 minute ago, Duncan said:

So, if you fail does that mean you can get released?🤔

Not sure what the official guidance will be, but I suspect that if someone refuses to take the training then they very well could possibly be released.

 

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Just now, Amulek said:

Not sure what the official guidance will be, but I suspect that if someone refuses to take the training then they very well could possibly be released.

 

I wonder would happen if someone failed it? i can think of a few people that would flunk out! 

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50 minutes ago, phaedrus ut said:

Someone should ask Sam Young if their new website looks familiar. 

Phaedrus

He won’t care because it isn’t enough.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, readstoomuch said:

He won’t care because it isn’t enough.

And of course he will claim credit for it as well.

Edit: Ah, there it is. The critics are already calling it a “good start”.

Edited by The Nehor

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Just took the training. It is a good broad overview. In cases of physical or sexual abuse everyone except the Bishop or Stake President is to report it to legal authorities as soon as possible. For the exceptions they are supposed to call the abuse line first, presumably to avoid doing anything to taint the investigation.

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Posted (edited)

And the report is now up on the church website listing those who need to take it. We have 65 people in my ward who need to take it. Over half of them are in Primary. Most are listed as past due while a few have it marked “not taken”. The difference is the latter were called in the last month so it looks like they have the 30 day timer to take the class after being sustained working. I am guessing it will he brought up in most Ward Councils on Sunday.

Edited by The Nehor

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Just took the training.  Nothing really new.  

Two deep.

Abuse is bad.

report it if you learn of it. 

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4 hours ago, phaedrus ut said:

Someone should ask Sam Young if their new website looks familiar. 

Phaedrus

Thank you Sam Young! Everybody thought him a weirdo, but sometimes that's what it takes to get things moving!

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6 hours ago, Duncan said:

I wonder would happen if someone failed it? i can think of a few people that would flunk out! 

I don't think it's actually possible to fail. There are only like three questions throughout the training, with only two options to choose from.

I'm not sure what happens if you pick the obviously wrong answer (e.g., sure, the more kids in the tent the better), but the way it's layed out I assume you get the exact same explanatory text - only with an 'incorrect' rather than a 'correct' indicator.

 

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By the way I like the training and think with it and other recent changes that  “they are enough.”

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You walk a fine line with stuff like this. You want them to know how to identify and deal with abuse but if you make the training too comprehensive it can become a legal liability for the individual and/or the church. I think they got close to the sweet spot where it makes it clear what situations should be monitored and which mean you get legal authorities involved.

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10 hours ago, The Nehor said:

I still think him a weirdo and am not convinced he got anything moving and I offer no thanks to him.

I'm not very fond of him but I do think he participated in raising awareness of systemic issues in the church. Any effort that improves experience for those participating in church is good, I'd say!

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6 hours ago, The Nehor said:

You walk a fine line with stuff like this. You want them to know how to identify and deal with abuse but if you make the training too comprehensive it can become a legal liability for the individual and/or the church. I think they got close to the sweet spot where it makes it clear what situations should be monitored and which mean you get legal authorities involved.

I don't think this is in danger of being anywhere close to "too much," if that's even possible.

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14 hours ago, The Nehor said:

And of course he will claim credit for it as well.

Edit: Ah, there it is. The critics are already calling it a “good start”.

Sam Young brought a huge amount of attention to this issue. Is it impossible for you to accept that he have been influential in raising this to the consciousness of members and leaders?

Gee, "good start" doesn't sound all that critical. It sounds logical. It's a good step. Is it the only or final step? Of course not. Can more be done and will more be done at some point? I'm certain it will.

14 hours ago, The Nehor said:

Just took the training. It is a good broad overview. In cases of physical or sexual abuse everyone except the Bishop or Stake President is to report it to legal authorities as soon as possible. For the exceptions they are supposed to call the abuse line first, presumably to avoid doing anything to taint the investigation.

So is a "broad overview" all that is needed? Or would more specificity be useful? I'd hate for you to be critical and call the broad overview a "good start" or something awful like that ;) 

 

Personally, I feel it is a "good start" at best. It's kind of the least they could do and I expect the church will do more. They can't do everything all at once so I suspect over time the training will be updated and added upon. But there are still issues that aren't addressed by the training.

Why are bishops and Stake presidents exempt from requirements for 2 deep leadership?

I'm guessing that the church did this with good intentions of battling abuse, but also as a way to address the public expectation and disappointments around the church's policies and procedures. Yes, it can do good, and it's also a decent PR move. But if they think this PR move is all that is needed they are going to be disappointed. More needs to be done. I expect it will. The only question is when.

 

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, HappyJackWagon said:

Why are bishops and Stake presidents exempt from requirements for 2 deep leadership?

I believe that this will at least partially change in the future (and I hope it does).   A great many of our "mandatory" interviews with the youth (where the adult leader instigates the interview) are now 2 deep and it's been great to see (and very successful).  I won't be surprised if those start falling under the requirement to be 2 deep at all times (not just as requested....but that was a step in the right direction).   We are seeing more and more parents and youth leaders (at the request of the youth since they are now aware of this option) involved in these regular interviews.

I do feel that if a youth approaches a leader wanting to talk to them, this may still be allowed (one on one).  But there should not be any probing questions (instigated by the adult while they are alone) regarding masturbation, etc., IMO.

Edited by ALarson
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