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Non-Profits: Are They Safe for Your Children?

by Blake Forrester 3/30/2008 9:50:00 AM


Volunteer Screening is Important to Safeguarding Your Children....

March 8, 2007
Updated March 30, 2008

Have you ever asked your non-profit youth organization, your church, or your school if they conduct background checks on their volunteers or contract workers? Chances are you trusted these organizations to take extreme precautionary measures for all persons involved with children. Unfortunately, not all volunteers are screened because many states and counties do not have laws requiring the screening of volunteers or contract workers, and the dangers are apparent.

In Knoxville, Tennessee, a convicted sexual predator, David Aaron Becker, was hired as a school referee. A background check was never conducted on him because there were no laws requiring it for referees. He had previously served time in a Colorado prison for sexually assaulting three 11-year-old boys. There are headlines every day providing similar stories.

The Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that at lease one convicted sex offender tries to obtain a position at a youth-oriented organization every 43 hours. Although there is the possibility of rehabilitation for those who have committed crimes in the past, it is important for non-profits and other employers to consider the recidivism of certain crimes. Sex offenders are four times more likely than non-sex offenders to repeat the same crime.

Because a large number of convicted sexual predators and other criminal offenders attempt to work for non-profit youth organizations, many non-profits are searching for affordable background screening services in order to make the industry safer for children and others who depend on charitable services.

One of the challenges for non-profits is the cost of background screening services. (MBC) provides an affordable solution for these organizations. The website allows volunteers and contract workers to obtain a personal background check to present to these organizations and now features a Volunteer Tracking System and Risk Management programs for non-profit associations.

It is important for all of us to ask our non-profits, our schools, and our churches if they conduct thorough background checks on their volunteers and contract workers before utilizing their services. As more non-profits team with reputable background screening companies, they are providing the best possible safety for children and others who benefit from charitable services.


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