Youth Protection Policy
The European Network Remembrance and Solidarity (abbreviated and hereinafter referred to as the ‘ENRS’) recognises the responsibility and understand the importance of protecting youth enrolled in its programmes from harm, abuse and exploitation, and therefore wishes to provide a safe and secure environment for them.
The ENRS treat all people equally, no matter their origin, religion, gender, age, whether they have any form of disability or whatever socio-economic background they come from. The ENRS is committed to working together to embrace difference and diversity and respect the rights of the young people.
The ENRS has adopted this policy in order to provide practices that will protect youth from incidents of misconduct or inappropriate behaviour and protect the employees and volunteers from false accusations. In all the workshop activities, the ENRS take steps to protect the participants from: physical abuse, sexual abuse, child sexual exploitation, neglect and negligent treatment, emotional abuse, or commercial exploitation. We aim to achieve this through compliance with child protection laws. Our objective is to safeguard the well-being of young people in our programmes, respect and promote their rights, wishes and feelings, and provide opportunities for them to take part in our projects safely.
Staff – all employees, full and part-time, seconded staff, contract employees and program volunteers that have contact with youth
Youth – individuals 18 years of age or younger
All ENRS staff that has contact with youth (project coordinators, educators, artists, experts, etc.) will be screened in accordance with this policy.
Screening will include at least the following:
A personal interview will be conducted with the applicant by management Staff to discuss the position and the applicant’s talents, qualifications and abilities and/or will be based on an evaluation of previous cooperation, if applicable.
Verification of persons to conduct activities with Youths
All persons referred to work with youth are required to submit a Statement of Good Conduct, which is attached as Appendix 1 hereto. ENRS, in accordance with applicable regulations, is obliged to check the above-mentioned persons in the Child Sex Offender Register in Poland maintained by the Minister of Justice.
Persons will not be considered if they are listed in the aforementioned Register (or another register of a similar nature used in a third country - in the case of verification by third parties outside the Republic of Poland) or have not submitted a Statement of Good Conduct.A personal interview will be conducted with the applicant by management Staff to discuss the position and the applicant’s talents, qualifications and abilities and/or will be based on an evaluation of previous cooperation, if applicable.
TRAINING AND EDUCATION
All Staff will receive an orientation that includes the ENRS Code of Conduct; an original signed copy will be kept in the file regarding individual’s collaboration with ENRS.
Supervision of Youth, programmes and Staff will be designed to protect youth and Staff. Practices to ensure a safe and caring environment will include:
- a designated Staff member will act as a focal point, responsible for making sure that the child safeguarding measures are integrated throughout the organisation and for the duration of the specific programme;
- the Youth participates in the ENRS projects only under overall supervision of their teacher, unless the Project regulations state otherwise;
- the management Staff can make unannounced visits to every youth programme;
- a minimum of two Staff members should be assigned to each programme;
- doors should never be locked while persons are inside the room. All storage, maintenance and utility area doors will be secured when not in use;
- the Staff will never entrust in custody Youth to anyone other than their teacher, authorised parent(s), guardian(s), or an individual authorised by parents in writing or verified by phone, and
- the Staff will utilise constructive methods for maintaining group control and managing youth behaviour.
CONTACT WITH YOUTH
It is understood that caring quality Staff will develop positive relationships with youth while involved in the ENRS programmes. The following practices will be followed to ensure the protection of both youth and Staff outside of ENRS programmes:
- the Staff will not initiate contact with or accept supervisory responsibility for Youth outside of ENRS programmes and activities;
- the Staff will not communicate with youth outside of the context of ENRS programmes via written, electronic or other means, and
- the Staff will always appear and behave in a manner consistent with the mission and values of the ENRS and the Project while on or off duty, including electronic, written and verbal communications.
The ENRS will promote positive values and youth protection strategies in its programmes, facilities, and with parents.
- The children can be photographed/filmed at the events organised by the ENRS with their parents’ consent only.
- Following their parents’ consent, the children’s images will be used in compliance with national laws governing the protection of one’s image.
- The parents will receive information about the programme content and schedules.
- The parents will be allowed to observe how programme are conducted at any time as appropriate, should they wish to do so, after prior arrangements with ENRS.
- The parents will be made aware of the ENRS Staff Code of Conduct. The ENRS will designate a spokesperson in the event of any incident concerning abuse or neglect.
- A copy of the Youth Protection Policy will be attached to all personal contracts.the Staff will not initiate contact with or accept supervisory responsibility for Youth outside of ENRS programmes and activities;
For purposes of this policy, “child abuse” is any action (or lack of action) that endangers or harms a child’s physical, psychological or emotional health and development. All Project Staff are recognised as mandated reporters and will report known or suspected child abuse immediately or as soon as practically possible. The Project Team, as well as educators and teachers will follow current regulations and the following guidelines for the reporting of abuse.
The Staff will follow an internal official way for the reporting of abuse and may report directly to local authorities if their supervisor does not handle any report immediately. If an incident of abuse or neglect is alleged to have occurred during the Project, the following procedure shall be followed:
- the child’s parent or guardian will be notified;
- the appropriate authorities will be notified; consistent with local regulations;
- the alleged perpetrator of the abuse or misconduct will immediately be removed from conducting the Project classes pending an investigation;
- the Project Coordinator and Co-organisers will cooperate with any investigation of the incident by local authorities, in the event there is no investigation of the incident by state or local authorities, a management team can be formed to investigate the circumstances of the incident, the team should act only in consultation with an attorney or a legal counsel, and
- any person who is not found innocent of the alleged abuse or misconduct will be removed from their position with the Project and from their position in the Institutions involved in the Project, subject to appliable law.
This policy will be reviewed and updated as needed by youth projects coordinators.