Assess the Level of Risk for Child Sexual Abuse by A Volunteer
Use the matrix on page 33 to judge how much opportunity a volunteer in your organization would have during regular activities to commit child sexual abuse. This matrix includes situations common to many youth-serving organizations but may not identify situations unique to your local government.
Items listed in each row are examples of the range of risk that organizations should consider for that particular row (the rows are not arranged in any special order). The risk should be evaluated based on how frequently the organization's volunteer activities attain that level of risk. For example, there is a significant difference in risk exposure for a program centered around volunteer-led wilderness treks lasting several weeks than for programs that have an occasional weekend camp-out supervised by volunteers.
Risks of child sexual abuse may be lowered through the use of mitigation measures--risk management strategies. For instance, when local governments cannot structure their programs to preclude one-to-one contact between children and adults, they can lower, or mitigate, the risk of child sexual abuse by establishing frequent communication between the child and an individual assigned to monitor the relationship.
They may further mitigate this risk by delivering educational programs that help children to recognize situations that place them at risk of sexual abuse and that tell them how to respond when they feel threatened. To reduce the amount of physical contact required between volunteers and children, youth sport organizations can train coaches to use instructional techniques that minimize the amount of physical contact with the athlete, thereby lowering the risk for child abuse.
When an organization can check several items in the "Higher" column without having in place mitigation measures, the opportunity for sexual abuse will be relatively greater for that organization than for ones with most activities in the "Medium" or "Lower" risk columns.
Matrix for Risk Exposure to Child Sexual Abuse National Collaboration forYouth Lower Medium Activities held in facilities Activities held in private homes. with public access. Mitigated Parents actively involved in Some parental involvement in program. program with their child. Mitigated Two or more adults One adult supervising a group of children. supervising group activity. Mitigated No regular interaction Periodic interaction for short periods of time between volunteer and any between volunteers and specific children, specific children. Mitigated No changing of clothing as Changing of clothes; showering, such as for part of activity. sport activities. Mitigated Training required for Training concerning child sexual abuse volunteers concerning offered to volunteers but not required. sexual abuse. Mitigated Education about child Education about child sexual abuse offered sexual abuse required for to children but not required. youth participants. Mitigated Organization regularly Organization providing informal oversight monitoring and evaluating of the volunteer's activities, a volunteer's activity. Mitigated No physical activity with Volunteer and child engaged in activities children involved for involving some physical contact. volunteer. Mitigated Organization with very little Organization with some staff turnover, staff turnover, including for including for volunteers, volunteers. Mitigated Services offered to children Services offered to children younger than older than 12 years of age. …