The following are steps in the screening process for staff applicants of Slovenski Camps that are to be completed:
1. Verification of previous employment At least one check of previous work (or volunteer) history completed for all staff.
2. Verification of degree/license/certification: Copies of license/certification required for health care personnel, and waterfront personnel.
3. Criminal background checks: Satisfactory background checks required for all new year-round staff, and seasonal staff with supervisory contact with children or youth groups. Voluntary Disclosure Form required for all other staff.
7. Personal interview
Slovenski Camps provides equal employment and volunteer opportunities to staff and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, disability, or veteran status – except in limited instances when age or gender considerations are bona fide occupational requirements (for example, for cabin counselors or to meet minimum accreditation age requirements.)
The camp counselor and camp staff person are the primary instruments through which the objectives, goals, and philosophy of Slovenski Camps are transmitted to the camper. The counselor is expected to be aware of and abide by the following personnel policies:
1. Camper Welfare: The first responsibility of each and every staff member is the health and welfare of the campers. Each staff member is expected to take every care to protect the privacy and person of each camper. Physically abusive punishment or any sexual contact between staff and campers is inappropriate and will be grounds for dismissal. Caution should be taken any time a staff member is alone with a camper (outside of the view of other staff members). This is for the protection of the camper and the staff member, as well as the camp.
2. Facilities: All staff are responsible for care of the camp’s buildings and equipment. Camp vehicles are not available for personal use without prior approval of a Slovenski. Unauthorized use of camp gasoline, tools, equipment, or supplies is prohibited. Personal calls are to be used only during time off. Office phones are for camp business only.
3. Insurance: Worker’s compensation insurance is carried by the camp on each employee for work related injuries/illnesses. This insurance does not cover non-work related injuries/illnesses. Liability insurance is carried by the camp which covers each employee when carrying out assigned camp responsibilities, as long as the employee is not negligent in carrying out those responsibilities.
4. Pay Periods: The wage agreement is based on a 5 day rate, since it is impossible to clock the actual work hours of most camp staff in the camp setting.
5. Time Off: Time-off periods will be scheduled as regularly as possible but necessarily at the convenience of the camp program. At least 2 hours daily will be freed up for persons with responsibilities for living groups. A plan for coverage of the living group should be worked out with the staff member’s supervisor.
6. Alcohol/Tobacco/Controlled Substances: Alcohol and controlled substances are not allowed on the camp property. In addition, employees are not to return to the camp property under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances. Breaking this policy is grounds for immediate dismissal. Smoking and chewing tobacco is not allowed on camp property.
7. NO VISITORS ALLOWED AT CAMP.
Slovenski Camps recognizes that a person’s right to freedom from discrimination includes the opportunity to work in an environment untainted by harassment. Offensive speech and conduct are wholly inappropriate and intolerable to the relationships necessary for the operations of the camp program. Harassment has the potential to create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment and may unreasonably interfere with an individual’s work performance, which could adversely affect an individual’s employment opportunity.
Harassment includes all unwelcome advances, written or verbal innuendoes, threats, insults, or disparaging remarks concerning a person’s gender, national origin, race, creed, color, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, veteran status, physical or mental disability, or religious beliefs that are offensive to a person associated with the camp program. Examples include verbal harassment (epithets, derogatory comments, demeaning jokes, slurs, threats, etc.), physical harassment (assault, unnecessary touching, impeding or blocking movement, physical interference with normal work or movement, etc.), and visual harassment (derogatory or demeaning posters, cards, cartoons, graffiti, gestures, etc.).
In addition to the above, sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and conduct of a sexual nature when submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment AND/OR submission to, or rejection of, such conduct is the basis for or a factor in any employment decision affecting the individual.
Any employee who has a question or concern regarding any type of discrimination or harassment is encouraged to bring it to the attention of their immediate supervisor or the camp director.
Any individual who is found to have harassed another individual, will be subject to discipline. Persons that have been exposed to harassment are encouraged to report the harassment to an appropriate supervisor. Supervisors that become aware of unlawful harassment or inappropriate behavior must report the incident to the camp director.
Child abuse is legally and morally wrong. We are required to report any alleged physical or sexual abuse that takes place at camp to the State Child Protective Services within 24 hours after the allegation is made known. Any allegation of abuse prior to a camper’s arrival at camp is to be reported within 8 hours, with a written report within 72 hours.
In a camp setting, physical abuse is most likely to happen when a counselor is disciplining a rebellious or unruly camper. Anything done to inflict pain while disciplining a camper is considered child abuse.
GUIDELINES FOR DISCIPLINING CHILDREN
- Counselors may NOT, under any circumstances, hit a child.
- Counselors may not use abusive or derogatory language with campers.
- Counselors need to ask for help.
- A staff member who encounters a particularly difficult child will seek the assistance of supervisory or administrative staff.
- In all dealings with campers, counselors should strive to respond as opposed to react to children.
GUIDELINES FOR CAMPER-COUNSELOR CONTACT
- on the hand, shoulder, or upper back
- never against a child's will (unless in the case of clear and present danger of the child)
- never against a child's discomfort, whether expressed verbally or non-verbally
- in the company of other adults
- never when it would have the effect of over-stimulating the child
- never in a place on a child's body that is normally covered by a bathing suit, unless for a clear medical necessity, and then only with supervision from another adult.
The physical size and strength of staff members necessitates that you use discretion and restraint in all physical contact activities with campers. Games that encourage intense competitive activities with physical contact that potentially could cause injury must be supervised very closely by non-participating staff members.
CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE
We cannot be too careful in the area of sexual abuse. Even the appearance of wrong or a false allegation can cause irreparable damage to the reputation of the accused staff member and the camp. Therefore, all staff members must be very cautious in order to avoid doing anything that could be interpreted as sexual abuse. Child sexual abuse includes, but is not limited to, any contact or interaction between a child and an adult when the child is being used for the sexual stimulation of the adult or of a third person. The behavior may or may not involve touching. Sexual behavior between a child and an adult is always considered forced, whether or not the child has consented.
GUIDELINES FOR STAFF
- there is no "hazing" of campers by campers or counselors
- campers will not be subjected to "initiation" rites that are abusive in any manner
- there will be double coverage of campers by adults during changing times
- younger children should be encouraged to change their own clothes as much as possible
- campers will not be alone with a counselor in his or her quarters
- a staff member will under no circumstances share a bed or sleeping bag with a camper
- counselors will set limits with children who "cling" or hang on them
- counselors will not give back rubs unless another adult is present, and then only with clothes on
- tickling or teasing a camper to the point where that camper is out of control is unacceptable
- pillow fights or wrestling matches and the like can become over-stimulating in short order and need to be limited and carefully supervised
- overnights need a minimum of two adult leaders and there needs to be at least one counselor present of the same gender as the campers
- counselors sleeping together on overnights is grounds for dismissal
- romantic lives of counselors cannot, under any circumstances, be shared with campers
- counselors should stay out of cabins other than their own after lights out at night unless on specific camp business
- male staff working with adolescent females need to be aware of the tendency for this group to develop hidden or secret romantic fantasies
- whatever is done with campers should be done in broad daylight, with company!
CHILD ABUSE REPORTING
Staff and volunteers need to be sensitive to each persons’ need for personal space (i.e., not everyone wants to be hugged). Our camp encourages appropriate touch; however, at the same time prohibits inappropriate touch or other means of sexually exploiting children. Procedures for Child-Abuse Complaints:
1. Any actions you observe that are not acceptable behavior according to the above guidelines should be reported as soon as possible to the camp director.
2. The camp director will notify the appropriate authorities and parents.
3. The camp director will take appropriate internal action.
In the event that there is an accusation of child abuse the camp will take prompt and immediate action as follows: At the first report of probable cause to believe that a child-abuse incident has occurred, the employed staff person receiving the report will notify the camp director, who will then review the incident with the executive director or a designate. However if the summer camp director is not immediately available, this review by the supervisor cannot in any way deter the reporting of child abuse by the mandated reporters. Most states mandate each child-care provider to report information they have learned in their professional role regarding suspected child abuse. In most states, mandated reporters are granted immunity from prosecution. The camp will make a report in accordance with relevant state or local child abuse reporting requirements and will cooperate to the extent of the law with any legal authority involved.
In the event the reported incident(s) involve a program volunteer or employed staff, the executive director will, without exception, suspend the volunteer or staff person from the camp. The parents or legal guardian of the child(ren) involved in the alleged incident will be promptly notified in accordance with the directions of the relevant state or local agency. Whether the incident or alleged offense takes place on or off camp property, it will be considered job-related (because of the youth-involved nature of the camp). Reinstatement of the employed staff person will occur only after all allegations have been cleared to the satisfaction of the director. All camp staff and volunteers must be sensitive to the need for confidentiality in the handling of this information and therefore, should only discuss the incident with the director or executive director. All full-time and part-time employees and program volunteers must read and sign this policy.
Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org confirming that you have read and understood the above stated policies.