1. All adults working with the Youth Group have a responsibility to model appropriate relationships between each other as well as to refrain from and discourage inappropriate relationships with any child under age 18, no matter how mature the individual. Adults must assume primary responsibility for maintaining appropriate boundaries between participants of all ages and cultivating an atmosphere of health and trust.
2. Adults must never engage in any manner of sexualized behavior with, or in the presence of, a child or youth. This refers not only to explicitly sexual behavior, but also to jokes with sexual content and “double entendres.” Physical expressions of affection, such as hugs, certainly have a place, but it is best to allow the youth to initiate the contact, and the adult must be sensitive not to allow them to be too frequent or prolonged.
3. Whenever two youth in a “dating” relationship both attend an event, those individuals are expected (and may be asked) not to engage in any exclusive or intimate activity during the event.
4. In the case of a minor (under 18 years old) engaging in sexual contact, sexualized behavior or sexual harassment, the individual will be removed from the event immediately and parents/guardians will be notified. Repeated incidents of such behavior may result in the youth being ineligible to take part in future youth events. In addition, participants age 18 and older should be aware that they may face criminal charges for sexual contact with minors.
5. In the case of a staff member or adult volunteer engaging in sexual contact, sexualized behavior or sexual harassment, that person’s behavior will be reported to law enforcement officials, and the person will no longer be eligible to take part in youth events.
~ Approved by the Board of Trustees, December 8, 2014.
~ Revised and approved by the Board of Trustees, May 15, 2015.