Background Check Policy for Staff and Volunteers

To ensure the safety of our sailing-school students under the age of 18 and to comply with NH RSA 485-A: 24, II and NHDES administrative rules Env-Wq 909 the Lake Winnipesaukee Sailing Association, Inc. (“LWSA”) adopts this policy for all staff members (including unpaid volunteers) who might be left alone with a child or children (anyone under 18 years of age). This policy will verify that no such staff member has a criminal conviction for causing or threatening direct physical injury to any individual; or causing or threatening harm of any nature to any child or children.

 

The procedure will be:

  1. The LWSA will perform background check—as described in RSA 485-A:24, II and NHDES Env-Wq 909—on each staff member before he or she will be left alone with a child or children. All future employment offer letters will describe this and indicate that a satisfactory background check is a condition of employment.

  2. Any staff member who has not had a satisfactory background check is prohibited from working with any child or children unless a staff member for whom the satisfactory background check has been completed is also present.

  3. In lieu of a criminal background check, staff members who are under the age of 18 are required to provide a minimum of two written references to the LWSA, at least one of which is from a non-relative. These recommendations must attest to the signer’s knowledge of the staff member’s character as it relates to whether the minor has caused or threatened to cause direct physical injury to any individual or harm of any nature to any child or children and their opinion on whether the minor is a good candidate to work directly with those under 18. All future employment offer letters will describe this and indicate that each employee under age 18 must provide such letters of recommendation before the beginning of camp.

  4. Sources of background checks may include services provided by the LWSA’s current payroll provider, police databases, and recommendation letters provided for staff members under the age of 18. For staff members over the age of 18, background checks will include a criminal conviction check for each state the staff member has ever lived in (even temporarily) since turning 18 and a check of the national sex offender public registry.

  5. To determine if a staff member will be allowed to work with children, the Sailing School Director or the Treasurer will review the results of the staff member’s background check for compliance with this policy and the law as well as any available references, employment history, and volunteer history. No applicant who has such conviction or is on the sex offender registry will be employed in a position that would put that person in a situation where they could be left alone with a child.

  6. A new background check will be performed at least once per calendar year on all staff members who might be alone with a child or children.

  7. The LWSA will treat the results of background checks and recommendation letters as confidential information. All such information will be kept in the files of the Treasurer.

  8. The LWSA will disclose to any parent or guardian of a student who so requests that a background check has been performed on camp staff, but not the results of any background check.

  9. The Treasurer will keep an up-to-date listing of each staff member whose position makes it possible that he or she might be left alone with a child or children, along with the status of his or her background check. The LWSA will provide a copy such listing to the NHDES upon request.

  10. This policy will be posted on the LWSA’s website. The LWSA will provide hardcopy of this policy to NHDES and to the public upon request.

  11. Before the opening of the sailing school each year, the LWSA will review this policy and the law and certify to NHDES that the policy in place meets or exceeds the requirements set forth in Env-Wq 909.

This policy is hereby adopted by vote the LWSA Board of Directors on 30 May 2015. 

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