Safeguarding in the Diocese of Texas requires a partnership between the EDOT Wellness and Care Team in the Safeguarding Office and the head of each organization in the diocese. The Safeguarding Office provides a process and ongoing support for screening and training staff, volunteers, and vendors, but the responsibilities for carrying out Safeguarding requirements in each ministry setting rests with the head of the organization. Below is information to help heads of organizations understand the process and carry out these responsibilities.
Overview of Safeguarding Certification Process
There are three sets of diocesan Safeguarding policies: Safeguarding God’s Children: Policies for the Protection of Children and Youth, Safeguarding God’s People: Safe Ministry with Adults, and Safeguarding God’s People in the Workplace: Preventing Sexual Harassment. See Policies and Help Sheets. The policies change periodically in response to particular diocesan concerns and to the actions of the General Convention of the Episcopal Church. Each set of policies contains its own parameters for who needs to be screened and trained. At present, certification lasts for five years. Who Needs Certification or Other Training?
The Safeguarding certification process involves numerous steps. See the Overview of Safeguarding Certification - Help Sheet for more details.
Responsibilities of Head of Organization
- Be familiar with the three sets of Safeguarding Policies
- Set an example by being current in certifications and following the Safeguarding rules of conduct
- Create a Safeguarding Team to implement policies and see that appropriate personnel are screened and trained under the Safeguarding policies
- Communicate Safeguarding requirements before inviting individuals into staff or volunteer positions
- Review and consult with Safeguarding Office on problematic Background Checks
- Ensure members of governing boards receive a SGP policy review Policy Review Videos for Vestries and other Boards
- File Safeguarding Annual Status Report (see below for links)
- Promptly address all Safeguarding violations and report them to the Safeguarding Minister
- Create culture of safety and mutual respect by enforcing Safeguarding rules throughout the organization
- Display the Report Misconduct Poster and otherwise communicate a commitment to providing ministry spaces that are free from all types of abuse, neglect, and harassment
- Contact the Safeguarding Minister when engaging with people with poor boundaries or disruptive personalities or with Registered Sex Offenders in the community Participation of Registered Sex Offenders
The EDOT Wellness and Care Team, headed by the Safeguarding Minister, the Rev. Canon Lisa S. Burns, is always ready to provide support, training, and guidance.
Status Report for Congregations (due May 15)
Status Report for Organizations (contact Marty Brickley for due date)
Status Report for Schools (due November 1)
Building a Safeguarding Team
Forming a Safeguarding Team
Safeguarding Appointment Form
Policies, Help Sheets
Safeguarding Policies and Help Sheets
Overview of Safeguarding Certification Process - Help Sheet
Who Needs Certification or Other Training
Guidelines for Participation of Registered Sex Offenders
Background Checks (provides information about when criminal background checks are required, how they are conducted, and how to interpret the results)
Report Misconduct Poster
When to Contact the Safeguarding Minister
Training Materials (that do not require a Safeguarding Trainer)
Policy Review Videos for Vestries, Bishop’s Committees, School Boards, etc.
Safeguarding in the Workplace - Harassment Prevention Training
Safeguarding Youth Helpers
“I KNOW!” (free curriculum to teach children and youth how to keep safe)